Run by young people for young people, Epping Forest Youth Council (EFYC) celebrated their 15-year anniversary with a celebration at the civic offices in Epping.
Current youth councillors gave a warm welcome to past youth councillors and guests to honour the youth council’s legacy, inviting them to share their experiences and insights working in the EFYC.
The youth council serves as a platform for the district’s young voices, advocating positive change and community development.
Platform for young people’s voices
Youth councillor Malachi Fontenelle (2014 to 2016) said:
There have been 182 youth councillors over the 15-year life of EFYC. It’s amazing to think some of today’s youth councillors hadn’t been born when EFYC was established in 2008.
We are voted in by pupils at our schools to represent the Epping Forest community for a 2-year period. Our work represents the views of young people at local, regional and national levels.
Campaigns about personal safety awareness, drugs education, local youth projects and positive mental health have provided a platform for young people’s voices and working towards a brighter future for the young people in Epping Forest.
At the celebration, attendees were treated to engaging presentations and talks by past and present youth councillors. They reflected on their youth council journey, the challenges they faced and the friendships they made.
Big impact on my life
Youth Councillor Ashwin Gohil (2016 to 2020) said:
My time here had a big impact on my life. I found an interest in democracy and politics I never knew I had. Being a youth councillor boosted my confidence and helped me develop my social skills allowing me to represent other young people and make a difference to my community.
Above all I have learnt that democracy matters so I encourage young people to get the voice of your peers heard.
A credit to the council
Epping Forest District Council Chairman, Councillor Darshan Sunger said:
Happy birthday EFYC!
I am incredibly proud to be the Chairman of Council in the 15th year of the Epping Forest Youth Council. The youth council are a brilliant set of young people who work hard for our district. They are a credit to Epping Forest District Council.
It’s so important to listen to the views of our young people, they are the future and their wants and needs matter. They make sure our young people can have their say and share ideas to make our district a better place to live and grow up in.
I can’t wait to see what they continue to accomplish.
Epping Forest Youth Council wishes to express its heartfelt gratitude to all past and present youth councillors, Epping Forest District Council, community partners, schools, parents, and supporters who have contributed to its success over the years.
It remains committed in its dedication to providing a platform for young voices and working towards a brighter future for the Epping Forest community.
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