Benalla Ensign

Keeping youth connected

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Twenty-seven young people showed great determinat­ion and flexibilit­y to complete Tomorrow Today's Connect9 mentoring program last week.

An online celebratio­n was held, attended by mentees, their families and their volunteer mentors to recognise the young people’s commitment.

Tomorrow Today executive officer Rosie Koop said the foundation recognised the importance of teenagers connecting with community and being able to spend time with others outside the family home.

“During pandemic lockdowns, stress levels can rise and young people can experience low motivation and energy levels,” Ms Koop said.

“We are so grateful that our wonderful volunteer mentors and community partners enabled the young people to stay supported and connected during this time of disruption and isolation.”Connect9 individual­ly matches students in Year 9 with a well-connected local volunteer who gives their time to support the young person to learn new skills, try a new sport or hobby, investigat­e career options and build their local connection­s.

Young people involved in this year’s programs had the opportunit­y to try a range of activities including working out at the Benalla YMCA, testing their problem solving skills in Escape Room games and digital challenges, trying out new art and craft activities at North East Artisans, working as a team with the Benalla Venturers, and exploring careers with Charles Sturt University.

“We know that young people benefit when they feel supported by a mentor,” Ms Koop said.

“They feel more part of their community and are more likely to continue with their education.

“With the current and predicted impacts of the COVID19 pandemic, this nurturing is needed more than ever.”

If you are interested in mentoring a young person in 2022’s Connect9 programs, phone Tomorrow Today on 5762 1211.

Victoria has recorded 603 new COVID-19 cases and one death, as the state’s constructi­on industry is shut down following violent protests.

It is the highest daily tally in the current outbreak and since August 2020.

It brings the total number of active cases in the state to 6000 and the death increases this year’s outbreak toll to 13. On Monday, 48,829 tests were processed and 40,811 Victorians received a vaccine dose at state-run hubs, according to the Health Department.

It comes as constructi­on sites across Melbourne, Ballarat, Geelong, Mitchell Shire and the Surf Coast were shut down for two weeks late on Monday, following violent protests outside the CFMEU’s head office in Melbourne’s CBD over a vaccine mandate for the industry.

Industrial Relations Minister Tim Pallas said the shutdown was required to cut down movement, reduce COVID19 transmissi­on and give the industry time to adapt to the new requiremen­ts.

 ??  ?? ARTC has released three design options for the Inland Rail Project
in Benalla. Option three,
Overpass replacemen­t.
ARTC has released three design options for the Inland Rail Project in Benalla. Option three, Overpass replacemen­t.
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