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Youth Week grants to bring sense of community to regional towns

Oliver LaneBunbury Herald
CoMHAT chairperson Renee Knapp is looking to make her group's youth forums bigger and better with new funding.
Camera IconCoMHAT chairperson Renee Knapp is looking to make her group's youth forums bigger and better with new funding. Credit: Supplied

South West organisations are among the recipients for the State Government’s Youth Grants for Youth Week 2024.

The Shires of Busselton, Capel, Dardanup and Augusta-Margaret River will all receive funding for their plans.

Another group who will receive funding is the Boyup Brook Community Mental Health Action Team who will receive $1500 for their youth forum.

CoMHAT chair Renee Knapp said the funding will significantly expand the possibilities for the forum.

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“This funding means that we can actually do this really effectively and make it actually exciting and valuable for the kids,” she said.

“We could run a youth forum without funding if we wanted to but it would be very basic, this funding really opens up the opportunity to make it ideally, we would love it to be an annual event.”

Ms Knapp said the kind of events are particularly important in a small town.

“Certainly in a small country town it’s really important for both the vibrancy of the town but also for those young people that they’ve got things on offer that helps them want to stay in their town so they don’t feel that they have to go far up to the big city to get all those sorts of things,” she said.

Ms Knapp said a focus on youth helped the vibrancy of a town.
Camera IconMs Knapp said a focus on youth helped the vibrancy of a town. Credit: Supplied

“There was also a lack of things on offer for our young people, particularly in that teenage demographic, we often have a lot of things on offer for the younger group but we’re really trying to spread that across, even all the way up to 25.”

Also among the grant recipients are Jobs South West who received funding for their part in the South West Youth Festival held in Busselton.

The event will be held in partnership with the City of Busselton to put on activity, information and art stalls.

The Shire of Capel will hold a Youth Open Day while the Shire of Dardanup has received funding for their Youth Fest 2024 which will focus on youth mental health and artistic expression.

The Shire of Augusta-Margaret River will run a Loud and Proud Youth Festival

Member of Collie-Preston Jodie Hanns said the funding would help foster community.

“Congratulations to the shires of Capel, Dardanup and Donnybrook-Balingup for being successful recipients of the Cook Government Youth Week grants,” she said.

“Youth Week is an important opportunity to recognise the valuable contributions that young people make to our communities.

“This week highlights their talent, leadership and volunteer efforts and I look forward to seeing the various events being held in April.”

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