New Youth Council officers report

SHARE

The past nine months have been busy for the Waitaki District Youth Council.
The youth council is structured in a similar way to the Waitaki District Council; it meets each month and has several sub-committees, while it also compiles monthly reports to be presented to the full council.
Youth council chairman Matthew Cullimore, in a report to the council, said the youth council had a strong finish to 2015 and had started 2016 in much the same way.
Matthew, a St Kevin’s College pupil, is in his first term as youth council chairman, replacing Jessie Waite, who was chairwoman for three years.
It has a new deputy chairman in Joseph Walshe, while Amy Hunter is the youth council’s new treasurer and secretary.
Since May, the council has helped organise a youth survey with the Waitaki Safer Community Trust and the It’s Not OK family violence campaign, has worked with other organisations to organise a youth forum, and has held a leadership development session at Camp Iona.
It has raised and donated funds to groups and individuals, and provided volunteers for events.
Oamaru ward councillor Melanie Tavendale, who works closely with the youth council, said the 2016 council had some fine young men and women on board.
“I think we’ve got a great group of young people this year that are really enthusiastic. We are trying to find as many activities for them as we can to be involved in.”While she said there was “room for improvement” at the youth council, Cr Tavendale said it had an important role to play in the district.
“They are increasingly working to become part of the community and a stronger youth voice, and I think a stronger link with the full council is helping achieve that. It’s a good opportunity for them to see a proper meeting structure and be involved in decision-making, really.”The youth council had identified several future projects, including throwing its support behind making the Victorian Precinct smokefree, working with council road safety co-ordinator Elton Crane on road safety advertisements, and increasing the community work carried out by youth council members, including rest-home visits.
Matthew said he looked forward to building on the work the youth council had done in recent months.
“The Waitaki District Youth Council has been going from strength to strength. Our members have been engaged and are driving some fantastic youth-related initiatives in the district. We want to build on this momentum and to continue to engage local youth in local body decision-making.”