Media Release by The Hon Larry Anthony MP

Youth Forum meets

A wide range of youth issues from volunteering to privacy laws were discussed yesterday at the meeting of the Australian Forum of Youth Organisations (AFOYO) with Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Larry Anthony.

“The Forum provides youth organisations with the chance to exchange information on youth concerns, progress key policy objectives and to raise issues based on their experiences of working with young Australians.

“The AFOYO is made up of 12 prominent youth organisations and began in 2000. It gives young people the support and cooperation of both the Government and the non-Government sector.

“Issues such as child protection, anti-discrimination and privacy laws, public liability insurance and the development of a youth agenda were discussed.

“Today’s meeting reflects the Coalition Government’s commitment to communication and consultation on youth issues. I believe it is vital that we listen to the many
non-government organisations. They do excellent work to provide development opportunities for young people.

“Previous AFOYO meetings have led to initiatives such as the very successful Come and Try Day, which gives young people the chance to get involved in their community through activities such as volunteering.

“Young people clearly want to be more involved. The statistics show that the number of young Australians involved as volunteers has increased dramatically, jumping from 17 per cent in 1995 to 27 per cent in 2000.

“Youth development activities not only give young people opportunities to do something to benefit their communities, but also provide an invaluable boost their skills, self-esteem and confidence.

“The Coalition has developed and funds a range of activities, such as the Green Corps and Australian Defence Force Cadets.

“Whether a young person is a Scout or a Girl Guide, doing work with Red Cross or participating in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, they have an unparalleled opportunity to learn to overcome challenges and realise their potential,” Mr Anthony said.