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Young Y People came from all areas of the Y

July 29, 2020 Voices of Young People

Over the past two weeks Y Australia was proud to sponsor five online media training workshops for close to 70 young people of the Y, in line with our commitment to listening to young people, empowering them, and ensuring their voices are heard on matters of importance to them.

I know how scary it can be to do media, but I heard from Di McDonald, who organised the workshops, how courageous and brave our young people were in practising and being coached on new skills in front of colleagues and others they had never met before. Not easy!

“It was a privilege to watch young people from as far as Kalgoorlie and Hobart connect with each other, and share insights into the impacts COVID-19 has had on them and their communities, and hear clearly how young people  are making a real difference to their communities and the lives of their friends and families during this challenging and uncertain time,” said Di.

It was important to offer the workshops free to young people of the Y, knowing that skill development is vitally important to young people, perhaps now more than ever before, and that society needs to hear from those we know are likely to suffer the greatest long-term impacts as a result of COVID-19.  Young people have also told us they want real practical and useful skills development opportunities.

Fifty percent of participants been stood down, had hours reduced, or made redundant, and 23% identified as either Torres Straight Islander, Indigenous, LBGTQI, CALD or with a disability.  They came from all areas of the Y, doing all kinds of roles, including several wonderful volunteers.

80% reported the training had made them feel either a great deal or a lot of a sense of belonging to the Y, 80% reported more confidence in their ability to handle a media interview or a difficult conversation and 96% were either extremely or very likely to use the skills they’d learned personally or professionally.

Magnificent and compassionate media trainer Christine Heard has trained myself and others senior leaders, but I’m really proud that now we probably have as many – maybe even more young people who have been media trained than our senior leaders.

In one young person’s words:  “After hearing from all the young people in the session, it’s very clear that we have a wonderful array of people who could represent the Y authentically and with pride.”


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