2009 NYAC Summit
So what’s NYAC and the Summit?
NYAC stands for the National Youth Advisory Council. There are three NYAC Youth Delegates representing each state and territory. Youth Delegates are voted into the position and stay in the role for up to 2 years. Their role is to advocate for improvements to the care system to make things better for kids in care.
The Youth Delegates from around Australia meet together 4 times a year on the phone and then once a year they get together for a big meeting which we call a Summit. This year the Summit was held in Sydney from the 15th to the 17th of February 2009.
At the Summit young people talk about the things that are good, and not so good about being in care in their State. They decide what the important issues are around Australia, and then they work on how the problems could be fixed.
This year, the four main issues talked about were:
- Transitioning from Care
- Case Plans
- Drivers Licences
So what happens to all the delegates’ hard work?
The Summit Dinner
A Summit dinner was held at The Star Room overlooking Darling Harbour, which was not only a chance for the young people to celebrate; it had a serious side.
The delegates presented the issues and solutions, to important people from the Government Including a Parliamentary Secretary, Ministers, Children’s Commissioners and Guardians and senior staff from Government Departments like Docs and DHS.
The Summit findings were shown on a DVD which the delegates put together during the three days of the summit. This was a highlight of the night and the message in the DVD could be summed up as: children and young people in care deserve equal opportunities to other Australian children and young people.
Entertainment highlights of the night were Nadine, a young person in care who travelled from Tasmania especially to sing at the Summit.
A group of young people from the UK called Freedom Road attended the Summit and sang at the dinner. Freedom Road are a group of seven teenagers from the RAPP program in London. Mostly kids in care, they aim to inspire young people to live their dreams. They are living proof that if you believe in something you really can make it happen. They fundraised enough to get themselves and eight fantastic workers on tour down under.
Freedom Road released their debut CD “Song for Wilberforce” in February 2007. The funds raised from the CD were to support the Milton Margai School for the Blind in Freetown, Sierra Leone. You can check out freedom road on www.freedomroadcreativearts.com
To download a PDF copy of the 2009 NYAC Summit Report click here.
If you are interested in meeting the delegates of the NYAC from your state go along to your states Youth Advisory Group or YAG. At the YAG you too can have heaps of fun and also your say about what it’s really like to be in care.
For more info contact the CREATE office in your state on 1800 605 155.