PCYC Bowen youth building safer communities

Following a successful youth forum run by PCYC Bowen as part of the Australian Government’s Safer Communities program, Bowen youth were recently given the opportunity to voice their concerns and understand the region’s decision making, when they were invited to a Whitsunday Regional Council meeting by Mayor Andrew Willcox.

The youth forum held at PCYC Bowen in August brought together a number of young people aged 12-24 years from a variety of ethnic groups and socio-economic backgrounds, along with community stakeholders and Queensland Police Service (QPS) officers, to discuss local concerns, services and supports required within community, and what issues they see as important currently facing the youth of Bowen.

Following the forum the feedback, ideas and initiatives were compiled into a report along with QPS data and presented to Mayor Willcox for review.

Upon reading this report, Mayor Willcox was so impressed by the ideas and information, that he invited the young people to attend a Council meeting to share their concerns and initiatives.

On Wednesday, 11 September a total of 16 young people aged between 11-16 attended the Whitsunday Regional Council Ordinary Meeting. They were given the opportunity to listen to the council agenda, see how decisions are deliberated and voted upon, understand the council process and hear information on numerous community topics.

Mayor Willcox was very impressed with the way the young people expressed themselves, and was happy to listen to the youth of Bowen.

“They were a little timid when they began but once they realised we were here to listen and we’re normal people, they really opened up,” Cr Willcox said.

“They were very passionate about a crossing at the park from McDonald’s so that no one gets hits, and we’ve referred that on to be assessed.”

“They also told us about some less fortunate people that they think we should have a greater focus on as well.”

Through our comprehensive youth forum and by conversations with young people and stakeholders from Youth Justice and Child Safety, PCYC Bowen have devised a wonderful series of events and activities to deter youth offending during identified peak periods and improve relationships between young people, community and police.

Click here for more information on PCYC Bowen’s programs, or call 07 4786 1383.