Minister for Youth Affairs Ryan Smith unveiled the 2012 Youth Parliament teams today with Youth Governor Veronika Drago.
Youth Parliament, now in its 26th consecutive year, provides young people from across Victoria's schools, universities, community groups and YMCAs with the opportunity to debate important issues and gain practical skills and training.
Mr Smith said the Victorian Coalition Government was committed to supporting Victoria’s YMCA Youth Parliament.
“The Coalition Government has increased funding from $50,000 to $75,000 annually over the next four years to encourage greater participation of rural and regional young people,” Mr Smith said.
“It’s important that we hear about issues that are important to all young people from across Victoria.
“Twenty teams made up of six young people have been selected for Youth Parliament 2012 and will be mentored by past Youth Parliamentarians ahead of its sitting in 2012.
“Since Youth Parliament began in 1987, we have seen many passionate young people raise issues and make recommendations that have subsequently influenced legislation in Victoria.
“This includes the mandatory wearing of bike helmets, nightclub safety reforms and zero blood alcohol limits for those accompanying learner drivers.
“Youth Parliament provides young people with a forum to highlight to the Victorian Government issues that matter most to them and it fosters leadership skills, self confidence and new friendships,” Mr Smith said.
2012 Youth Governor Veronika Drago said she was looking forward to working with the new teams and discussing important issues for young people.
“It’s always amazing to hear the innovative and inspiring opinions of young people, and I expect that this year will be more insightful and productive than ever before, given the very diverse base of Youth Parliament,” Ms Drago said.
“I look forward to seeing youth opinion being heard and acknowledged in an incredible forum –where better than the Chambers of Parliament House?”
The 2012 Youth Parliament will be sitting from 2 to 5 July 2012. A full list of the teams participating in 2012 follows. For more information on the YMCA Youth Parliament go to www.youthcentral.vic.gov.au/youthparliament
Teams participating in the 2012 Youth Parliament:
- Upwey High School
- Ivanhoe Girls Grammar
- Hoppers Crossing Secondary College
- Westbourne Grammar
- Bendigo YMCA
- Castlemaine YMCA
- Wellington Shire Youth Council
- The Melbourne Youth Group
- Phoenix P-12 Community College
- Scouts Victoria
- Swinburne University
- Pascoe Vale Girls College
- Copperfield College
- University of Melbourne
- Kyabram P12 College
- Monash University
- Glen Waverley Secondary College
- Greater Murray YMCA
- Wangaratta High School