Port Hedland young leaders gain lifelong leadership skills

Article image - Port Hedland young leaders gain lifelong leadership skills Young Leaders Program particpants attended an adventure camp,
where they took part in team building and skills development activities.

Young people from the Town of Port Hedland in Western Australia have contributed substantially to the community and gained lifelong leadership skills through Council’s first ever Young Leaders Program, held during 2009.

Port Hedland is a dynamic town of 15,000 people, located in the Pilbara Region of Western Australia.

Aged between 16 and 24 years, the 12 aspiring young leaders participated in five specialist leadership modules over as many months.

These included station stays, adventure camps, skills building workshops and community projects. The modules were designed to equip the young people with teamwork skills, problem solving and promoting positive youth messages to their community.

The young people then had to use those newly developed skills to complete community projects of their choice.

Half of the group gained project and event management skills and developed their artistic skills by designing and painting a vibrant urban artpiece out of the Pretty Pool public ablution block.

This involved grant writing, approval processes, budgeting, teamwork, organisational skills, event planning and promotion, as well as the opportunity to work with a professional urban artist.

Participant Sarah Amiradaki said the opportunity to be part of a team that has completed a meaningful community urban art project was very satisfying.

“Over the duration of the program, we have improved our communication and critical thinking skills,” she said.

“I hope this leads to each one of us remaining motivated to achieve our goals throughout the rest of our lives.”

The other half of the young leaders group developed an impressive, engaging, entertaining and educational DVD for young people, titled ‘Get in2 It’. The project enabled participants to show others what fun things there are to do in Hedland and encourage young people to be involved in their community.

It aimed to educate and improve the morale of young people in the town, raise awareness of opportunities available to them and highlight positive recreational activities.

Council’s Manager for Community and Economic Development, Julie Broad, said the program is a great example of the strong and effective partnerships Council’s Youth Services Action Group has built to benefit young people.

“The program allows young people to learn from each other and strengthen their community networks, while providing peer support to wider groups of young people in the town,” she said.

Port Hedland Mayor Kelly Howlett, WA Minister for Mining and Pastoral Region Ken Baston, and Pilbara MLA Tom Stephens, joined stakeholders, participants, family and friends to witness the progression of the projects at an awards night to celebrate the completion of the program and projects.

This night allowed participants to thank their workplaces, program facilitators and sponsors for contributions made, and it provided a further opportunity to enhance their public speaking, multimedia and presentation skills, which were taught in program modules.

As a result of this outstanding program, not only did 12 brilliant young leaders enhance their skills, but purposeful and valuable community projects were achieved that will continue to benefit the community.

For further information contact Julie Broad on (08) 9158 9399.