As part of its core work, AYAC is committed to building capacity of young people partly by championing and investing in youth led organisations. We want to help ensure that the youth led sector is supported and resourced to make a genuine and lasting contribution to Australian society.
Youth led organisations have told us they wanted to widen their membership and reach to “disadvantaged” young people but did not currently have the capacity to engage these groups. In January, AYAC invited youth led organisations to apply for one-off grants for projects that directly engage and build the capacity of young people facing disadvantage. We asked them to come up with innovative, creative ideas which trial new ways of engaging new groups of young people. We were bowled over with what they came up with.
Here are the pilot projects that AYAC has provided funding for:
Top Blokes is a NSW-based volunteering groups that provides leadership opportunities to combat stereotypes about young men. They’ve created a project called “Building Blokes” to pair young men from different cultures with existing young volunteers and get them working on landscape and maintenance jobs. They hope the project will give these guys some practical skills, a sense of achievement and grow relationships with existing Top Blokes.
The AYCC aims to build a youth movement to solve the climate crisis. They will run two “Repower Australia” projects in South West Victoria and in Queensland, where they will start a number of youth led climate action groups of regional young people, and Aboriginal young people. They hope their volunteers will learn valuable campaigning and mobilising skills to encourage their own communities to take action on climate change and renewable energy. Click here to read their recount in PDF (479 kb). Click here to read their recount in .doc (459 kb).
Left Right is an independent, non-partisan think-tank of young minds with a mission to involve young people in public policy. They are running the “Bunbury Outreach Project” where they will recruit and train a group of regional young people to become Left Right outreach officers. The young people they engage will excite other youth in their communities about contributing their ideas to national public policy debates and campaigns initiated by the Left Right Think Tank. Click here to read their April update.
Vibewire is a youth run non-profit organisation that creates media, arts & entrepreneurial opportunities and events for young people. They will be running a project that will integrate a group of Indigenous young people into the online production team at vibewire.org. Participants will learn valuable skills in producing website content and visual design.
These experiments will conclude in June 2012 and AYAC will then report on the outcomes and learnings from these projects. We want to share their experiences with all youth led organisations so that more marginalised young people will have the opportunity to develop their abilities through the valuable experience of volunteering in the youth led movement. Watch this space...