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December 8, 2022 – 12:30pm-2pm


This forum will share lessons and insights from three very different programs that have centred the youth voice in their program design, implementation and research. Learn key lessons about engaging, collaborating and promoting the voice and lived experience of young people to co-design programs for young people.


Young Leaders of the West (YLOTW): Co-design with young people, for young people – Project Coordinator Sarah-Jane Blunt, Community Engagement Worker Financial Counselling & Gambler’s Help at IPC Health, and a Young Leader.

  • The presentation will focus on the collaborative co-design and learning journey to design and implement a Youth Forum and a Schools Podcast Challenge focused on gambling harm with young leaders, and community partners in the Western suburbs.

From a seat at the table to future proofing communities. Codesigning disaster risk resilience with young people – Carla Hall (she/her) Youth Affairs Council Victoria, Disaster Resilience Programs Coordinator and Sneha Challa (she/they) Youth Affairs Council Victoria, Young Peer Worker – Disaster Resilience

  • YACVic was engaged by the Victorian Government (Bushfire Recovery Victoria (BRV) and the Department of Education and Training (DET)) to engage directly with young people across eastern Victoria about their experiences of, response to, and recovery from the 2019-2020 Black Summer bushfires. This provided young people, with the opportunity to share their ideas for recovery, rebuilding and preparation for a better future. The project resulted in the release of A Seat at the Table: Young People and Disaster Recovery a guide, co-produced by young people from bushfire-affected communities. The resource comprehensively addresses aspects of youth engagement and participation in disaster response, crucial to community resilience. Elevating young people to the centre of community preparation, recovery, rebuilding and planning ensures they are genuinely heard, and are meaningfully supported, valued and included in disaster preparedness.

Brimbank Young Researchers Program – Mariah Magri, Team Leader of Young Communities at Brimbank City Council, and Dr Catherine Orr, Swinburne University

  • The Brimbank Young Researchers Program is an evidence-based program developed through a collaboration between Brimbank City Council and Swinburne University of Technology. Since its inception in 2018, the aim of the program is for local government, tertiary and secondary education sectors to come together to engage with secondary school students and other young people to learn foundational skills to become ‘young researchers’.

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