Last year’s WA Youth Awards night.

Youth Awards now open

Nominate a young person doing good in their community.
June 13, 2024
Jacki Elezovich

NOMINATIONS are now open for the 2024 Youth Awards.

Youth Affairs Council of WA chief executive officer Sandy McKiernan said the awards aim to showcase the achievements of young people in WA.

“It’s a big deal to be a finalist, and young people can often be the unsung heroes in the community, volunteering or doing things where they don’t feel they need to be acknowledged in this way, but we want to make an event that lets them know they are appreciated for the good they do,” she said.

The awards comprise more than 10 different honours for specific actions and contributions by a young person to their community. The fields range from outstanding youth worker, positive achievements, innovation for a sustainable future, and young changemaker.

Ms McKiernan said the range of awards aims to recognise the diversity of young Western Australians and their passions and skills.

“The different categories really represent the vast array of things young people are involved in all over WA, and we’re always adding new categories to reflect how things are changing with what young people are doing,” she said.

Each category has its own judging panel, which is comprised of three judges, a mix of experts and youth consultants.

The WA Young Person of the Year will also be chosen at the awards gala dinner in September, selected from the existing winners.

Ms McKiernan said this award is always a tough choice for its judges.

Each category winner will receive a $1000 cash prize, and the ‘young person of the year’ will receive a $10,000 grant to pursue a youth-related project or initiative across WA.

Ms McKiernan said the winners have delivered a wide range of projects in previous years, from Indigenous community connection to women’s empowerment workshops.

“Projects from the grant funding have been very varied over the years, and it really depends on the background the person has and what they’re passionate about doing. The 2023 winner Isabella Choate has been working on an all-access pride event for young people, with a disability focus. Winners can expand something they’re already working on or use the money to start something new,” she said.

2024 also marks the awards’ 25th consecutive year running which has grown over the years with the overall mission remaining steadfast.

“Giving young people a voice in this small way encourages them to continue doing whatever it is they’re doing and helps give them confidence to raise their own voices where they’re needed,” she said.

“We’re helping to destroy the myth that young people aren’t involved in their community or aren’t contributing any good. They are there but often hidden, and they’re doing amazing things.”

Nominations for the awards will close on June 28 and the presentation gala dinner will be held on September 20 in the Ritz Carlton Ballroom.

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