As Central Grampians LLEN (CGLLEN) embarks on its challenge to build Ararat’s own youth hub, Jack Ward, a local teenager, reached out to tell us more about why a youth hub could benefit the community.
WHY DO WE NEED A YOUTH HUB?
“Ararat is a good place, but it needs more accessibility to programs aimed at young people,” Jack said.
Despite a lack of local resources, Jack has taken it on himself to work hard towards his passion: journalism. He runs his own blog from home, he is part of his school’s news team where he interviewed the Victorian premiere (no biggie!), and he is also writes for Youth Journalism International, and is part of Project RockIt.
Yet, with experience and determination like this on hand, he still feels there is a lack of facilities for young people to continue to develop their skills in a casual environment.
“Outside of sports, Ararat doesn’t offer much for young people,” he told Central Grampians LLEN. “The library doesn’t specifically cater to young people,” but a youth hub would.
The goal of the youth hub, with its working title 12Twentyfive, is to provide a safe, creative and innovative space for young people to hang out, explore new skills, and be a part of the community. It will cater to people between the ages of 12 and 25 years old. Jack is interested in using the youth hub as a casual work space where he can work on his writing or other creative projects.
WHERE IS THE YOUTH HUB?
The building is located between the school grounds of Ararat College and Federation University Australia’s building (Central Grampians LLEN’s offices on Laby Street), a great access point for young people in Ararat.
CGLLEN’s Youth Project Officer Brendan is working hard to develop a functional youth hub that will empower young people to host events and workshops like their peers in larger cities, as well as give them a safe place to socialize outside of school parameters. The building can be used as a learning space, a kitchen, a social hang out, and even a space for theatre, music or other arts events.
HOW CAN YOU GET INVOLVED?
The youth hub is still in the process of raising funds for renovations. It has received an anonymous donation through FRRR to start the basic renovations, but still needs more funds before it can be completed. As the result of storms in 2016, the gutters had been severely damaged and the ceilings leaked which lead to mould in the carpeted flooring. These basic necessities are already being repaired, though creating a welcoming space for young people will require additional funds.
Want to hear more from Jack’s perspective on the Youth Hub? Have a read of his very own blog post here.
Want to help Jack and other young people? #HelpTheHub by donating today through the youth hub’s GoFundMe page: www.gofundme.com/12twentyfive or contact Central Grampians LLEN for more information.
Follow our #HelpTheHub hashtag on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.