Young agents for change
Students from high schools around the region brought solutions to hard hitting problems facing their communities to the recent Young Change Agents program in Deniliquin.
Young Change Agents is a program that helps young people see problems as opportunities through the lens of social enterprise.
Participants from across the region pitched their social enterprise solutions to problems they had identified in their community to a panel of three judges, including Deni Ute Muster general manager Vicky Lowry, Edward River Council general manager Adam McSwain and Deniliquin business woman Sivonne Binks.
The students ranged from Years 7 to 10, with the judges’ choice ‘GetFed’ being the day’s youngest team from Finley High School and the audience choice ‘Fabulis’, also from Finley.
The winners received $500 to promote their idea.
The ‘Get Fed’ group — comprising Finley High Year 7 students Liam Rafferty, Lenny Dattoli, Harrison King, Matthew Whelan and Travis Lawton — pitched a drought relief program.
Their prizemoney will be used to further research an idea to collect food waste from metropolitan areas and deliver it to livestock farms in the local area.
The ‘ Fabulis’ pitch recognised that reliable access to internet for farmers was an issue, and proposed to establish a system by which they provide farmers with internet access subsidised by urban internet users.
Deniliquin High School’s Year 9 proposed ‘ B Safe’ to the judges — an app focused on drug and alcohol abuse and providing an efficient and discrete way to report it to police.
‘‘We thought that in rural areas there are a lot of drugs and alcohol being used especially by youth,’’ ‘B Safe’ team member Eliza Barker said.
‘‘The app would allow you to use SMS or call, and there is also information on what to do in certain situations. When you open the app there is an emergency button to call and a map where you can pinpoint where you are.
‘‘It’s mostly for people who don’t feel safe in their neighbourhood and want something they can immediately access on their phone, for peace of mind and comfort.’’
Deni High’s ‘B Safe’ team (back, from left) Ella Harvey, Duncan Hughes, Jack Richards, Max Reeves and Eloise Ritchie; (front) Rosie North, Kirn Randhawa, Eliza Barker, Zara Macdonald and Olivia Cathcart.