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Opinion piece – young people are our future


Anne-Marie Ryan is a member of the Barwon Regional Partnership and Chief Executive Officer of the Geelong Region Local Learning and Employment Network (GRLLEN) Inc.

How can we ensure that all of our young people thrive and are well prepared for their future?  

We know that young people’s growth, development and achievements are highly contingent on their home and learning environments, as these are the places where they spend most of their time. 

We also know strong families and rich learning environments exist when communities value these things. 

Our communities are strong when everyone is included and supported to develop the confidence, capabilities and skills needed to reach and express their potential and find their place. 

Our young people should have the opportunity to reach their full potential. For this to happen a range of fundamentals must be in place.  

They need to be supported to achieve each of the milestones through childhood to adulthood when they are safe, healthy, housed, loved and educated. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for parts of our community, for many of our families and for growing numbers of children and young people. 

In some cases alternative support arrangements need to be put in place to ensure that children and young people receive the support that they need 

So, our challenge is to decide what our priorities are. With so many families and their children and young people struggling to have their basic needs met we can’t claim to be a strong community.

To have your say or register for the Barwon Assembly in Wallington on July 19 go to 

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