Innovation

The Koorie Youth Summit

Posted 18 May 16

The Koorie Youth Summit a place for Aboriginal young people in Victoria to come together and share what’s important to them. The Koorie Youth Summit is a partnership between the Koorie Youth Council (KYC) and Kalinya.

A delegate from the inaugural event in 2014 said, “the Summit has been one of the most rewarding and inspiring events I’ve ever been a part of.”

Each year around 150 young Koories gather from around Victoria to connect with each other, celebrate culture, discuss issues in our community, and share ideas to make change and create a future they want.

The Summit is an event run by young Koories, for young Koories. Under the direction of the KYC Executive Members, we create spaces for conversation on topics such as: resilience in cultural identity, having your voice heard, LGBTI rights within cultural contexts, decolonizing your music choices, Caring for Country and environmental sustainability, wellness, tackling Ice addition in our communities, starting small businesses, using social media as a tool for social activism, breaking cycles of domestic violence, and the role of young people in community and politics.

Keynote speakers have included AFL champion and community focused leader, Adam Goodes; Former UN Australian Youth Representative and Founding Director of the National Indigenous Youth Leadership Academy, Benson Saulo; Co-founder of Warriors of the Aboriginal Resilience, the group behind the Melbourne protests that shut down the city in support of remote communities in Western Australia, Meriki Onus; filmmaker Richard Frankland; AIME CEO, Jack Manning-Bancroft; Indigenous Coordinator for the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and Young Environmentalist of the Year, Amelia Telford; and Co-Founder of The Fighting Gunditjmara Dance Group, Tim Kanoa.

The Summit attracts a highly engaged group of young Koories; many attend first as delegates and quickly move into roles as mentors, facilitators, organizers and speakers. “I had no idea what to expect,” said a delegate of the inaugural Summit, “yes there were inspirational speakers and workshops but it was this whole experience that is awesome. I am grateful for the opportunity to participate and will continue to do so now for the next 10 years – until I’m too old to come.”

Watch the Koorie Youth Summit Video

Download the KYS 2016 Ideas Report 

Photo: Tyson Austin
Dtarneed Onus-Williams speaking at KYS2016