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Multicultural Western Australians a focus at Catalyst Youth Summit

The Catalyst Youth Summit I attended today at Edith Cowan University was a hub of positive energy and collaboration that generated a great discussion about the things that are most important to young multicultural Western Australians.

Coordinated by the Youth Affairs Council of WA, the event brought young people, politicians and other decision makers together to identify solutions for issues such as mental health, refugees and asylum seekers, discrimination, access to opportunities and ensuring a sense of belonging in the community.

I was impressed by the five groups of young people who passionately related their stories and spoke about what more can be done to improve the lives of children and young people from multicultural backgrounds.

This topic is of particular relevance and importance to my office, as we recently undertook a consultation with 296 children and young people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, and will publish two reports later in February.

While many children and young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds are doing well, others may have experienced trauma and significant stress in their lives, which, along with the difficulties of settling in a new country, present significant challenges to their health and wellbeing.

Events such as the Catalyst Youth Summit are an effective way to hear the views of children and young people so we can better advocate for their specific needs and ensure they are able to thrive and contribute to the WA community with all their abilities and diversity.

Colin Pettit
Commissioner for Children and Young People