Twelve young people passionate about making a difference in the community were inducted into the 2024 Youth Council on Wednesday.
At the group’s first official event at City Hall, Hteemoo Yohellaymusaw was elected by her peers to lead the Youth Council as the Junior Mayor.
Supporting her in this significant role is Deputy Junior Mayor, Mercy Antanasio.
Acting as an advisory committee to Council, Youth Council consists of 12 members aged between 12 and 17 that meet monthly to discuss important issues such as mental health, climate change, diversity, and inclusion.
Additionally, the Youth Council publicly release a quarterly report, with recommendations and advice to Council on matters relating to young people.
Greater Geelong Mayor Trent Sullivan congratulated the newly elected Youth Council members, recognising the honour and considerable responsibility that comes with being appointed as youth councillors.
Geelong Mayor Trent Sullivan:
There are about 20,000 young people aged between 12-17 in Greater Geelong, and to represent and advocate for them and matters relating to youth is an important role.
I hope the youth councillors enjoy their term and use the opportunity to connect with like-minded peers and discover more about themselves, the organisation, and our community.
Junior Mayor Hteemoo Yohellaymusaw said it is an honour to step into the role of Junior Mayor for the Geelong community.
Junior Mayor Hteemoo Yohellaymusaw:
Together with the Council, my commitment is to advocate for every young person in our diverse community.
I believe that by working together, the Youth Council can make a real impact.
My goal as Junior Mayor is to engage and collaborate with fellow community members to address the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and create a brighter and more inclusive future for everyone.
The Youth Council contains three representatives from each of the four council wards: Bellarine, Brownbill, Kardinia and Windermere, with Wednesday’s induction session signalling the formal commencement of their 12-month term.
A term on the Youth Council offers invaluable opportunities for young participants to actively engage with and learn about civic and democratic processes.
Simultaneously, it provides Council with a unique channel to seek advice and input from the youth on matters that directly impact them.
Beyond their advisory responsibilities, Youth Council members actively participate in training and development session, are invited to Council events, and take part in the Councillor Connect Mentoring program.
The Youth Council members for 2024 are:
Emily Wolfe (15)
Shaney Jacobs (16)
Megan Watson (15)
Mercy Antanasio (15)
Sebastian Roberts (13)
Bee Chugh (15)
Friday Nuneza (15)
Elsie Lloyd (13)
Georgia Johnston (14)
Dean Smilevski (15)
Amelia Leach (15)
Hteemoo Yohellaymusaw (16)