Youth Advisory Council

The Youth Advisory Council (YAC) champions the voices of children and young people to provide youth perspectives and leadership to the Queensland Family and Child Commission (QFCC).  The YAC meets regularly to provide advice to the Commissioners on what is important to children and young people in Queensland.

If you have any questions please contact yac@qfcc.qld.gov.au

Portrait of Aastha

Aastha

Gender pronouns: she/her

Aastha is a strong advocate for youth financial literacy and helping young people better manage their money. She is a believer in educational reform that includes consent education, mental health awareness and healthy living. Aastha is also passionate about racial and gender equality and advocating for LGBTQI+ rights and youth justice.

Aastha is a high academic achiever and strives for excellence in all aspects of life. At school, Aastha pursues debating at the Senior A level and is a member of the leadership team, where she advocates for mental health on behalf of the student body and endeavours to provide accessible mental health services at school. She volunteers to coach primary school debating and is undertaking a teaching role at her dance studio to further her interpersonal and leadership skills.

Aastha joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Aden

Aden has represented Queensland in futsal and is passionate about sports and nutrition. He was born and raised in Australia and has Arab heritage. Aden is committed to speaking out against racism and bullying and the negative impact it can have on the lives of young people growing up in diverse communities. He believes by being a good listener to those in need he can help create positive change.

Aimee

Aimee is a proud Worimi woman. She works in the child and family industry and is studying Anthropology. As a result of her own lived experience in out-of-home care, Aimee is passionate about the out-of-home care system and the diverse range of issues that young people face in care and when transitioning to adulthood.

Aimee has been a strong advocate for issues such as youth justice, homelessness, housing and drug and alcohol conerns. She is also interested in the areas of domestic and family violence, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues and improving supports for young parents.

Ameya

Gender pronouns: she/they

Ameya has a broad range of advocacy interests including climate and environmental action; addressing racism and improving diversity education; taking action against bullying; promoting better online safety; ensuring safety, equality and genuine representation for the LGBQIA+ community; better sexual and consent education in schools; improving access to mental health resources and services for young people; improving outcomes in the youth justice system for marginalised youth; and preventing domestic and family violence and ensuring women’s safety. Ameya is hugely passionate about ensuring children’s rights and increasing genuine youth representation, participation and engagement within the community, with diverse youth and in the fields of diplomacy and politics.

Ameya is trained by Bravehearts to identify signs of abuse and to work with victims and survivors and children. She is an ambassador with Green Fox Studio, a social enterprise delivering training to current and former inmates. Ameya’s notable achievements include being a National finalist for the UN Youth Evatt Trophy, a finalist for an ABC Community Cohesion Award, and shortlisted for The Courier-Mail’s most influential student shortlist. Ameya received a community leadership award from Julian Simmonds MP and is a four-time state and national finalist for the UN Youth Voice competition. She is also a member of the national Student Voice Network.

Ameya is a grade 12 student who aspires to become a diplomat and work with the UN.

Ameya joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2018. She is also a member of the Bravehearts National Youth Advisory Council.

Alyssa

Gender pronouns: she/her

Alyssa is a strong advocate for LGBTQIA+ rights, especially the rights of transgender young people and improving support and acceptance from the community. She is passionate about youth mental health, improving access to support services, and offering accommodation in schools and workplaces. She is also passionate about climate change and building infrastructure that can withstand severe weather events.

Alyssa facilitated breakout sessions with senior government and community executives at the launch of the QFCC's 'Growing up In Queensland: Living With COVID' report. She is also closely involved in the QFCC’s 'Out of the Dark' program, a youth-based initiative that tackles online grooming of young people.

Alyssa is an active patrolling member of her local Surf Lifesaving Club.

Alyssa joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Ben

Gender pronouns: he/him

Ben is passionate about recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in the Australia Constitution and in increasing representation in education, health, and politics. Ben is also an advocate for LGBTQIA+ rights and the health and mental health of young people.

Ben Worked as a Youth Ambassador for Save the Children Australia, where he had the opportunity to deliver the Youth Manifesto for Change to the Australian Government.

Ben was awarded the Australian Future Leaders' Justice and Equity Award and the Peter Dutton Public Speaking Award. He has a Bachelor of Arts from Australian Catholic University and hopes to work in public policy or the social justice sector.

Ben joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2019.

Bri

Gender pronouns: she/her

Bri advocates for better education for young people about employment rights and mental health. She would also like to see inclusive sexual education rolled out in schools. As someone who has felt the impact of dangerous driving habits, Bri also wants to raise awareness in young people around road safety.

Bri has extensive experience representing youth views. She joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2019 and participated as a youth advocate for The Y Australia (YMCA). She is a former Youth Member for Cairns and Barron River in YMCA Queensland Youth Parliament and she has begun working as a junior secondary English and Science teacher this year.

Bri has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and English from James Cook University. She is eager to graduate from a Master of Teaching at the University of Queensland this year and has already been enjoying working with young people in education.

Caroline

Caroline is studying a Bachelor of Human Services and a Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice. As a result of her own journey in the care system, Caroline is a strong advocate for children and young people living in out-of-home care.  She has worked with the CREATE foundation to promote and create systemic change in the out-of-home sector.

Caroline is an experienced presenter. She recently participated in an online podcast with Bravehearts about child safe organisations, was a panel member for the Queensland Mental Health Commission's Shifting Minds launch and presented the findings of the QFCC's Growing up in Queensland project.

Caroline's other interests include breaking the stigma for children and young people in out-of-home care, youth mental health and criminology. Her career goal is to create positive change in these fields.

Gefion

Gender pronouns: she/her

Gefion is a passionate advocate for mental health, specifically around raising awareness of neurodivergent disorders and of the impacts of misgendering and bullying. She is also passionate about addressing issues surrounding gendered violence and youth suicide. Her passion towards mental health topics stems from lived experience with disorders such as anxiety, depression and Autism Spectrum Disorder. She is also passionate about protecting the environment and wildlife and improving youth employment, entrepreneurship and STEM opportunities, particularly for young women and LGBTQIA+ people.

Gefion graduated Year 12 in 2021, from the Queensland Academy Creative Industries, studying the International Baccalaureate. She was a youth volunteer for global, community-based computer programming club CoderDojo in Brisbane, and she is a citizen science volunteer and intern with festival organiser Woodfordia.

Gefion is studying a Bachelor of Environmental Engineering at the University of Southern Queensland. She hopes to become an environmental engineer and focus on sustainable design, resource and waste management, renewable energy, and reducing carbon emissions. Having spent many years overseas, she aims to build an understanding with those around her of equality and encourage them to embrace diversity.

Gefion joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Grace

Gender pronouns: she/her

Grace is a strong advocate for improving mental health support and access for young people and addressing youth suicide and self-harm. As a young person with lived experience of anxiety and depression, backed with professional experience, she can clearly articulate the challenges faced by young people managing their mental health. She is also an advocate for LGBTQIA+ rights, particularly around raising awareness of and reducing LGBTQIA+ discrimination.

Grace is a member of the Headspace Youth National Reference Group and is contracted by Beyond Blue as a subject matter expert. She is a member of many government, university and community mental health research groups and committees.

She participated as a Youth Researcher in the QFCC’s Rights, Voices, Stories project, which captured the experiences and perspectives of children and young people involved with Queensland’s child protection system.

Grace has completed a Bachelor of Psychology at Griffith University and is commencing a Masters of Suicidology. She has received awards from Griffith University’s School of Applied Psychology for her outstanding contribution to the Griffith and external communities.

Grace joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Holly

Gender pronouns: she/her

Holly is passionate about addressing youth homelessness, especially the lack of support offered to young people and their families experiencing homelessness and breaking down the many misconceptions and stereotypes surrounding the issue. She is also an advocate for improving sexual consent education in schools to make it accurate and accessible for all young people. Holly would like young people provided with better, interactive driver education to reduce tragedies on the roads.

Holly was elected as Junior Deputy Mayor of the Gold Coast Junior Council, President of Junior Chamber of Commerce and is now an Executive Member for the Senior Chamber. She has also been a youth member for the YMCA Queensland Youth Parliament. She is working on developing a not-for-profit organisation that specialises in connecting volunteer opportunities for school students in their local communities to create closer community ties. Holly founded and facilitated a drama club at school that worked towards creating plays that specialised in opening conversation to taboo topics in a safe and educational way.

She is a first-year law and economics student at Queensland University of Technology. She has professional experience in financial planning and she tutors children.

Holly joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Jessy

Gender pronouns: she/her

Jessy is a proud Aboriginal woman from North Brisbane.

She is a strong advocate for mental health and promoting positive wellbeing.

Jessy is a Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Foundation Ambassador, and she received a Queensland Ambulance Scholarship and a Wilson Security Scholarship in 2020. During high school, Jessy represented her school as School Captain and Social Justice Captain.

Jessy has multiple jobs in the health and retail sectors. Jessy is also a QUT Oodgeroo student ambassador and a debating mentor.

She is studying a Bachelor in Behavioural Science (Psychology) and a Bachelor of Justice at the Queensland University of Technology and hopes to work as a psychologist when she graduates.

Jessy joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2022.

Kilian

Gender pronouns: he/they

Kilian is passionate about LGBTQI+ rights, climate advocacy, disability advocacy, and raising awareness around domestic and family violence, breast cancer and youth homelessness.

A close friend of Kilian’s lives with cerebral palsy, which has shaped their perspective on the rights of people living with a disability.

Kilian volunteers as an assistant for classmates with learning difficulties and severe physical disabilities. They have volunteered for breast cancer fundraisers, domestic violence fundraisers, and at Emmanuel City Mission in West End.

Kilian joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Laura

Gender pronouns: she/her

Laura is passionate about improving education in the areas of consent, sex and respectful relationships. She is also passionate about disability recognition and advocates for better supports across all education systems. As an experienced healthcare worker, Laura is passionate about healthcare equality, particularly for those facing geographical and socioeconomic barriers.

A proud rural woman, Laura runs a social media-based advocacy program for young people living in rural and remote areas of Australia. Laura is studying physiotherapy and hopes to become a rural practitioner. She is also a volunteer Rural Fire Service and SES emergency responder.

Laura joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2021.

Madison

Madison is the 2019 Queensland Youth Volunteer of the Year and was a recipient of the International Diana Award for being an inspiring and exceptional volunteer, mentor and changemaker. Madison was recently shortlisted for the 2019 Queensland Young Australian of the Year award and was a Australian Human Rights Commission Young People's Human Rights medal finalist.

Madison is studying a Bachelor of Business and is involved with a variety of groups on campus and across various communities, including the National Council of Women Queensland, Women Deliver Young Leaders Program, Amnesty International, Queensland Mental Health Commission, Rotary E-Club of Global Trekkers and Beyond Blue.

Madison is passionate about humanitarian and social justice issues, youth engagement, equality, inclusion, youth mental health awareness, and empowering women.  She hopes to work for the United Nations where she can serve others and create positive social change.

Malika

Gender pronouns: she/her

Malika is a passionate advocate for gender equality and for empowering people of all genders, ethnicities and backgrounds to respect women's rights. Malika also advocates for better mental health education for young people through better access to services and would like to see a national curriculum that caters for students of all sexualities and genders. Malika is also passionate about climate change and sees a need for an awareness or activism program in schools and greater action from large corporations.

Malika has work experience in a law firm and has gained leadership experience through Children's Rights Queensland’s Young Leaders Challenge and the University of Queensland Young ChangeMaker program. At school, Malika is the International and Cultural Prefect, International Student Ambassador, Student Council Representative, and President of Diplomacy Club (school).

She was awarded The Duke of Edinburgh International Award (Bronze, working on Silver) and received Academic Honours in Maths, Business, Economics and Modern History.

Malika hails from Long Xuyen, An Giang Province, Vietnam. She joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Rebecca

Gender Pronouns: she/her

Rebecca is a strong advocate for domestic and family violence awareness, especially promoting paid domestic and family violence leave in workplaces. Rebecca advocates for sexual offence reform, better consent education in schools, and mandated paid miscarriage leave. She is also passionate about improving youth mental health, as well as increasing diversity and youth engagement in the community and in politics. Rebecca is also hugely passionate about climate justice.

Rebecca is active in her community and volunteers for a range of organisations, while working as a court paralegal and support worker.

She is studying her Bachelor of Behaviour Science and Laws at the Queensland University of Technology.

Rebecca joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2022.

Sigrid

Gender pronouns: she/her

Sigrid is passionate about improving young people’s mental health literacy, including improving access to mental health services and support within schools. She is an advocate for better education in schools around healthy relationships and sexual consent. She is an advocate for the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, especially the integration of First Nations educators in the education system, access to healthcare and reform of the public healthcare system.

Sigrid was a member of the YMCA Queensland Youth Parliament in 2019, and the Netball Queensland Young Women's Empowerment Committee in 2020. She was honoured to have represented Sheldon College as School Captain in 2020.

Sigrid is studying her second year of a Bachelor of Advanced Science (biomed) at the University of Queensland, with the plan to study postgraduate medicine. She volunteers with Orange Sky.

She joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2020.

Zhanae

Gender pronouns: she/her

Zhanae is a proud Ghungalu, Birri, Widi and Kaanju woman from Central Queensland.

Zhanae is passionate about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander advocacy, specifically self-determination, understanding intergenerational trauma, addressing lateral violence, reducing over-representation in government systems, and promoting cultural safety and truth telling. She also advocates for better approaches to domestic violence and youth justice issues, such as raising the age of criminal responsibility and the lack of a holistic and culturally appropriate responses for young people. Zhanae is passionate about learning how to care for country, protecting country and ensuring sacred sites are respected.

Zhanae is a court support and case worker with Darumbal Community Youth Services Inc. She is a small business owner and is working on establishing an advocacy, professional development, consultancy and program delivery service, focusing on empowering young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to self-determination while creating safe spaces for them to learn and work in.

In 2021, Zhanae was Youth Premier, Youth Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs and Youth Member for Rockhampton, as a part of the Queensland Youth Parliament.

Zhanae is studying a Bachelor of Agriculture with Central Queensland University.

Zhanae joined the QFCC Youth Advisory Council in 2022.

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