Content

Event organisers often ask how they can better engage the young people in their community. Research suggests that young people are very active participants in Australia Day celebrations. While young people learn about Australia Day at school, there are lots of things you can do to involve them in your community celebrations on Australia Day.

 

Proposition

  • To capture young people's interest in Australia Day activities and to entice engagement you need make a commitment to engage with them-to talk to them, to listen to them and to respect their ideas.
  • You could prepare by brainstorming ways to create opportunities to ask young people what their ideas are, what they would value, what they would enjoy.

 

Use knowledge and experience of local council and local community groups

  • Local councils have resources that you can use and people you can consult.
  • You may have more success connecting and making opportunities to talk with young people if you use the knowledge of local youth workers or people who are directly involved with young people (e.g. council, youth groups, sporting groups, volunteer associations).
  • Local council youth workers and some local community groups will also be able to help you identify young leaders in the community.

 

Make the context and your objectives clear

  • In your discussions with young people, you will need to explain why you are interested in their ideas and also tell them the objectives and aims of celebrating Australia Day.
  • Try and hold a specific event for teenagers-most people in this age group don't want to attend events with their parents. Young people like to attend events that held by other people that they can relate to.

Here are ideas of things that have proved successful for some local event organisers in the past:

  • Battle of the bands or a band day
  • Sporting events such as cricket matches, rugby games etc.
  • Swimming competitions
  • Movie nights
  • Australia Day disco or dance party
  • A social evening / afternoon outdoors with a band performing
  • Approach local schools and youth clubs to try and get young people involved in volunteering with your Australia Day events.
  • Fashion parade - where local young people can make an outfit that can be paraded (perhaps theme it 'Australia Day fashions of the future')
  • Arrange a debate between youth groups or schools about what Australia Day means
  • Ask kids to write poems/songs about Australia Day, with finalists presenting their poems/songs at your celebrations
  • Kite flying - encourage people to make Australia Day kites and fly them at the same time on Australia Day. 
  • Prepare clever Aussie anagrams (e.g. how many words can be made from the letters in 'Australia Day'?)
  • Think up your own great Aussie slogan