Introducing Amos – the 2018 Youth Representative
Each year, UN Youth Australia in consultation with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade select the Australian Youth Representative to the United Nations. Amos Washington is the 2018 Youth Rep and had a chat with UN Youth Australia’s National President, Jessica Herne, about the role.
Hi Amos, congratulations on your recent selection as the 2018 Youth Rep!
Thanks! I feel very honoured to be selected and I can’t wait to see what this year brings.
What made you want to apply for the Youth Representative program?
I’ve been moved by the many stories I’ve heard throughout my time working with young people. During my time on the UN Youth Australia team, I’ve seen how the Youth Rep program has the ability to amplify the voices of young people and help young Australians to recognise how important their role to play is in decision-making. This year, I want to continue provide an opportunity for young Australians to have their voices heard. I also want to create a link between young people and the decision-makers who have the ability to affect their lives.
What are you most excited about doing in the role next year?
There are so many things I’m excited about, but I think the biggest one for me is the Listening Tour. I love to travel so I’m looking forward to visiting young people from all across the country. The Listening Tour is a chance to consult widely with young people on the issues they care about most. The Listening Tour informs the agenda I’ll bring to New York and the report I’ll deliver at the end of the year. Throughout this year I want to answer the question “What would Australia look like if young people were given a greater say?”
Your Listening Tour will take up most of your time as Youth Rep. How many young people do you expect to engage with over that time?
I will be visiting every state and territory in Australia during the Listening Tour. I want to meet as many young people as I can and also talk to lots of decision-makers about the great things that young Australians are doing across the country, and the policy decisions that young people care about and want to participate in.
What will you do when you head over to the UN in New York?
In September I’ll be travelling over to NYC to be part of the Australian mission to the United Nations. I’ll be spending six weeks there representing the views of young Australians on the world stage.
What happens to all the information you gather throughout your consultation once you return home to Australia?
After New York, I’ll come back to Australia to meet with politicians, organisations and other decision-makers to share the results of the consultation. I want to make sure the information we collect can create recommendations that can be used to strengthen the voices of young Australians.
What message do you want to get out there to young Australians?
All young people have unique ways of looking at and understanding global and local problems. There are so many ways to get involved in making change regardless of your age, and it is crucial that the perspectives of young people are considered in important policy-making decisions.
The Youth Representative Program is supported by the Australian Government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The role requires considerable funding, and collaborations. Amos is seeking partnerships to make his plans possible. If you can help, you can contact him at [email protected]