Empowering Youth to Transform Australia's Future
The following words, excerpted from the Foundation for Young Australians' (FYA) press release of November 12, 2020, apply, in my opinion, to young Canadians, Americans, and others throughout the world. FYA's just-released strategy document, Transform the Future can be a model for Canada and any society ready to empower its youth to help create a better world. "Young people across Australia are facing multiple crises right now. The economic and social upheaval caused by COVID-19 has only exacerbated this for young people - from mental wellbeing to job security. At the same time, they are unwilling to accept the status quo and are connecting, creating, and organising in new ways to create a more equitable, sustainable, and just post-COVID-19 world for all of us. Video launching FYA's 2021-23 Strategy, Transforming the Future Denied the right to vote, under-represented in Parliaments, and unheard in our media, young Australians are repeatedly told their voices will not be listened to. That’s why FYA is committing to unconditionally back young people (14-25), propelling their efforts and helping build their power - as allies and on their terms. Our vision is that young people have the power to beat injustice and transform the future. We’re backing them with the trust, resources, skills, and connections to make change. From leadership development and training, to grant-making, convening and codesign with and by young people - this vision ensures that young people aren’t just the beneficiaries of our vision, but the central agents of change." QUESTION: Who at a national level in Canada, has young people's backs like FYA does in Australia? Unless they are out-of-school, the Government of Canada has no jurisdiction over 15-24 year-olds. In proposing the Transitions Canada Coalition (TCC), potential partners and allies across Canada tried to create a not-for-profit vehicle for mobilizing collaboration among youth-serving agencies to mobilize our youth to create a great life for themselves and a better world for all of us. Canada's unique educational jurisdiction issue excludes 5 million in-school youth, virtually all 15-24 year-olds, from our national Youth Employment and Skills Strategy. Could this be an initiative of Prime Minister Trudeau's Youth Council?