Young thinkers needed in the ACT to guide and shape social issues
The Sector > Workforce > Advocacy > Young thinkers needed in the ACT to guide and shape social issues

Young thinkers needed in the ACT to guide and shape social issues

by Freya Lucas

August 25, 2020

Children and young people in the Australian Capital Territory are being invited by Jodie Griffiths-Cook, the ACT Public Advocate and Children and Young People Commissioner (PACYPC), to share their thoughts about how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected children and young people. 


The Young Thinker forum is being formed as part of Ms Griffiths-Cook’s mission to make things better for children and young people in the ACT, and to hear directly from children and young people, and not just from the adults who work with them.


Those aged 25 years and under are being invited to contribute their thoughts in relation to various topics and issues. The current topic centres on the changes caused by the pandemic, and Ms Griffiths-Cook is seeking the “COVID story” of children and young people, which can be shared using their own words, or indeed, pictures. 


Guiding questions to support children and young people in responding to the topic include:

  • What did you miss the most?
  • What did you enjoy the most?
  • How did the adults in your life react at the time? How did this make you feel?
  • What do you think about online learning and online classes?
  • As life starts to slowly go back to normal, what do you want to happen now?
  • How can adults make this easier for you?


In terms of formatting of responses, Ms Griffiths-Cook suggested:

  • Write a message or a story
  • Create an artwork or comic strip
  • Submit a video or audio recording
  • Write and/or record a song.


Responses can be individual, or formed in a group, with privacy implications and other areas addressed here.


Young Thinker Rules:

  1. Must be under 25 years old.
  2. Must live, go to school/university, or work in the ACT.
  3. If responses are able to be shared, permission must be given. Names will only be shared or published if requested.
  4. Authors and illustrators have the right to be recognised as the person who created their work. In some circumstances, PACYPC may need to contact them to check what they want done to uphold their rights.
  5. Those under 12 years of age need the permission of a parent or guardian to send material. 
  6. Material that could harm, hurt or offend other people, or if it discriminates against people will not be shared.
  7. If a video recording is sent it will not be shared if the video features identifying markers, such as faces.
  8. If there are concerns or worries about safety or wellbeing information may be shared more broadly.


Further information about privacy rights and our legal responsibilities has been made available. 


To enter the Young Thinker forum, an online entry form must be completed. Participants are also able to send mail to GPO Box 158, Canberra ACT 2601 along with the consent form.

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