One of the most satisfying SWMACC projects over the years has been the continued success of the Emerging Pacific Youth Leadership Program (EPYLP). The EPYLP was created to empower and educate aspiring young leaders through a program that balanced cultural awareness with real-world learning opportunities; including collaborative forums, workshops, training and speaking engagements. Two young people to have emerged from this program and go on to better things are Selwyn and Rebecca.
Selwyn get's down to business.
Before joining the EPYLP, Selwyn Lloyd wore hi-vis gear and worked as a labourer. These days, Selwyn is highly visible in the community. After gaining a qualification in community work, Selwyn is now employed by the Department of Education as a support worker, has been a White Ribbon Day ambassador, and is the founder of the #FistsDown social media campaign which inspires youth to make better decisions and put a stop to organised fights and brawls. After developing the idea with the help of his SWMACC mentors, Selwyn presented the idea to Multicultural NSW and the heads of departments for NSW Police, the Department of Education, Family and Community Services (FACS) and the NSW Council for Pacific Communities. It was well received and Selwyn is now looking to get the campaign into the wider community and into schools. Further study is also on the cards for Selwyn. When he can fit it around his now extremely busy schedule.
Rebecca finds her voice.
Being shy isn't an ideal quality for a leader, but Rebecca hasn't let that stop her from accomplishing so much in her 14 years. The naturally gifted athlete, who comes from an Aboriginal and Samoan background, attributes the EPYLP as the boost she needed to overcome her shyness and build her self-confidence. That culminated in Rebecca performing the national anthem, in English and her Aboriginal language, for the state premier and a large audience, receiving rave reviews and requests for further performances. Rebecca has since received numerous awards and scholarships for both her academic and community- service achievements. Earlier this year, Rebecca was elected as the youth representative, the youngest person to have ever held this highly regarded role.