About the Youth Council
Hutt City Youth Council (HCYC) members get the chance to share a youth perspective with the Mayor and elected members of Council.
We make sure that young people in Lower Hutt get a chance to share their views on important issues happening in our city.
HCYC is made up of passionate, committed people who are keen to make positive change for Hutt Valley youth, and the community as a whole.
Our diverse, multi-cultural team members:
- are 12-24 years old
- have a variety of backgrounds that represent the wider community
- come from all over the Hutt Valley
- are either in high school, tertiary study or working full time.
As young people ourselves, we know it can be hard to get people to listen to us and take us seriously - especially in matters that affect our local communities.
What we do
Our aim is to work with Council, local community groups and collectives, and the youth of Lower Hutt to help make a city that we can be proud of.
We achieve this by:
- working with young people in Lower Hutt and providing a youth voice to Hutt City Council
- advocating for the well-being and interests of youth in our communities
- working with and within Council to raise knowledge and awareness of youth issues and concerns
- ensuring our group culture and values are diverse, inclusive and non-judgmental.
HCYC Members supporting 2018 Day of Silence – taking a stand against biphobia, homophobia and transphobia. L-R: Seren Lewis, Willow Bailey, Tesh Kells, Cameron Arps, Sophia Nem, Luke Evison, Bryana Jensen, Vavao Leafa, Sam Cooper, Robbie Veldman.
HCYC met with Minister of Education Chris Hipkins, Mayor Ray Wallace and Deputy Mayor David Bassett to discuss their submission on the NCEA review. L-R: Seren Lewis, Willow Bailey, Tesh Kells, Cameron Arps, Sophia Nem, Luke Evison, Bryana Jensen, Vavao Leafa, Sam Cooper, Robbie Veldman.
When we meet
We meet every 2nd Monday at Naenae Library from 6-8pm.
We talk about issues that are happening in our city and what young people think about them. Things like climate change, homelessness, and recycling and waste reduction to name a few.
If you’re passionate about social change, politics or have opinions that you think should be heard - we want to hear your voice!
Take part in online surveys
We also know that not every young person wants to sit in a meeting every 2 weeks talking about politics (and that’s ok!). If you still want to have your voice heard, you can sign up to Youth-Spective, our online survey tool. Once you sign up we'll email you our surveys so your voice can be counted and your opinions heard.
To sign up to Youth-Spective, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The HCYC members as at August 2019 are:
- Bryana Jensen (Chair)
- Sophia Nem (Deputy Chair)
- Alex Reese (Communications Officer)
- Willow Bailey (Advocacy Officer)
- Sam Cooper (Deputy Advocacy Officer)
- Vavao Leafa
- Charlotte Lawrence
- Ellarose Lamberton
- Seren Lewis
- Robbie Veldman
- Miia Van Beusekom
- Liam Joseph
- Luke Evison
- Kaitlyn Gallagher
What we've done this year
This year we have been focusing on areas we think are of high priority to young people. These include:
- youth mental health,
- sustainability and climate change, and
- the local body elections in October (we don’t support any particular candidate but we want to encourage all eligible young people to vote!)
We also stay on top of what’s happening within Council so we can make submissions and speak at council or committee meetings on issues that are relevant to young people.
Using this foundation and relationship with Council, we can make a difference for youth in Lower Hutt. We have already made strides towards this through the written and oral submissions for the Annual Plan.
While we aim to be active in making sure the youth voice is heard within Council, we also hope to work with Council on issues like:
- youth physical and mental health,
- creating more opportunities for youth involvement, and
- creating more youth friendly spaces throughout the Hutt.
HCYC 2019 strategy planning. L-R: Tesh Kells, Cameron Arps, Sophia Nem, Ellarose Lamberton, Sam Cooper, Seren Lewis, Bryana Jenson, Pfuma Mahowa, Heather-Pearl Moffat, Robbie Veldman.
How to get in touch
If you want to know more about the HCYC or are keen to join: