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Young Leaders in Social Change Announced

21 August 2012 at 10:18 am
Staff Reporter
The Foundation for Young Australians (FYA) has a revealed the 18 young Australians who are to be part of the organisation’s 2012 Young Social Pioneers Program 2012.

Staff Reporter | 21 August 2012 at 10:18 am


Young Leaders in Social Change Announced
21 August 2012 at 10:18 am

The Foundation for Young Australians (FYA) has a revealed the 18 young Australians who are to be part of the organisation’s 2012 Young Social Pioneers Program 2012.

Selected from more than 130 applications, FYA says this year’s Pioneers are ‘enacting social change’ through initiatives across diverse sectors.

Some of the projects include creating brighter and sustainable futures for orphans in Uganda; providing assistance, support and care to those with eating disorders; and empowering Australians to open their hearts and homes to asylum seekers.

Queensland Young Australian of the Year 2012 and Young Social Pioneer alumnus, Chris Raine, has been named key ambassador for the program.

Raine is responsible for the nationally recognised Hello Sunday Morning program. 

“The YSP program inspired me and gave me the skills and networks I needed to build my organisation and really make a difference,” he said.

“The capability of this next group of Pioneers is remarkable and I can’t wait to see the difference they’ll make in Australia and the world.”

Now in its fourth year, YSP is a 12-month leadership program that invests in young change
makers, providing mentoring; international networks; and training and development in leadership, communication, business planning, financial acumen, evaluation and resilience.

“FYA has been blown away by the creative, intellectual and entrepreneurial might of these young people,” the CEO of FYA, Jan Owen said.

“We are excited to unleash what we believe to be Australia’s most influential force of young leaders in social change,” she said.

The YSP program is modelled on the International Youth Foundation’s global YouthActionNet® initiative and invests in inspired young Australians to develop their leadership skills and support their vision for social change.

The 2012 Young Social Pioneers are:

• Adam Everill, 26, VIC: Founder of Rugby League Against Violence (RLAV), which promotes positive
conceptions of masculinity in Papua New Guinea and provides a platform for players to become champions against gender-based violence.

• Christopher Campbell, 27, SA: Founder of Our World Today, a news organisation that veers away from sensationalised and negative news, and shares positive and inspiring stories of the world.

• Giancarlo de Vera, 26, NSW: Founder of Welcome to Australia, a social inclusion initiative aiming to cultivate a culture of welcome in Australia and to act as a positive voice around asylum seekers, refugees and multiculturalism.

• Hayward Matthews, 25, TAS: Founder of one cent movement, an initiative that turns everyday
transactions into charitable opportunities by rounding up online purchases to the nearest dollar and donating the difference to organisations in need.

• Huy Nguyen, 27, ACT: Founder of Enable Development, a social enterprise that aims to build the leadership capacity of people with disabilities, and to improve the products and services available to them.

• Ilona Quahe, 21, WA: Founder of Ignite, an education initiative which tackles education inequality and empowers young people from less privileged backgrounds to reach their potential by engaging university students as mentors and tutors.

• Jessica Sparks, 20, NSW: Founder of Sparking Life, an initiative that campaigns for, advocates and
spreads awareness about organ donation and its importance in Australia.

• Joanne Sharkey, 28, VIC: Founder of Prickle Community Acupuncture, which provides affordable acupuncture services, targeting those with low incomes or disadvantaged backgrounds to make acupuncture equally accessible to all.

• Jordan O’Reilly, 23, NSW: Founder of Fighting Chance, an organisation that creates employment opportunities and fulfilling life experience for people who face poverty, unemployment and social isolation, due to a disability.

• Julian O’Shea, 28, VIC: Founder of Engineers Without Borders Australia, which aims to transform the engineering and technology sectors and make a positive impact in disadvantaged communities through humanitarian engineering programs.

• Lawrence McIntosh, 26, ACT: Founder of Canberra Clean Energy Connection, which joins
communities and renewable energy to enable people to invest locally in their own energy generation.

• Linh Do, 21, VIC: Founder of Speak Your Mind, which trains young people in specialised, cause-based writing, enabling them to communicate with purpose while remaining objective from a journalistic perspective.

• Nicole Gibson, 19, QLD: Founder of The Rogue & Rouge Foundation, a charity that supports victims of eating disorders and other mental illnesses associated with body image and self-esteem.

• Nkandu Beltz, 29, WA: Founder of the Kununurra Youth Development Programme, a skills-based mentoring project that engages youth with positive activities to encourage a sense of ownership and belonging in the remote Kununurra community.

• Rosie O’Halloran, 26, NSW: Founder of foundations.(au), which provides full time care, education and safe and nurturing living environments to children in Uganda.

• Sarah Rowbottam, 27, WA: Founder of Proximity, an artist-led initiative that incubates the development of small-scale works by independent WA artists.

• Sophie Weldon, 23, NSW: Founder of Creative Ventures, which produces innovative new media experiences and social enterprise projects to raise awareness about social and environmental issues.

• Vanessa Picker, 21, SA: Founder of Play Forward, an initiative which collects and redistributes pre- loved sporting equipment to disadvantaged kids.

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