Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

'Mum, I Can Do This from Yeppoon': 15yo

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

'Mum, I Can Do This from Yeppoon': 15yo

Article excerpt

Aspire CQ

Warren Acutt

A 15-YEAR-OLD, with ambitions of making millions online, last Saturday said to his mum, "I can do this from Yeppoon."

Prior to this he was convinced he would have to move south on finishing his secondary schooling.

What changed? Last week on Wednesday there was a session on building apps, Thursday was the inaugural Young Change Agents regional pitch night, Friday a master class on Communities Leading Change, Friday night the 47-hour GovHack started, Saturday morning the guest presenter from the Communities Leading Change masterclass met interested youth at the Rockhampton Grammar School, Sunday afternoon five GovHack pitches were made.

This all happened here in our region. Our region, that last year won the most state and national GovHack awards in regional Australia.

Change is happening, enough for a local 15-year-old to rethink his post school plans.

He attended the YCA pitch night as a participant, then spent most of his (and his mum's) weekend at the Smarthub Rockhampton with another team creating a geo-centric computer game that uses government data on natural disasters to entertainingly educate youth how to prepare for and react in a natural disaster that could actually occur in the region where the game is played.

This 15-year-old became more aware of a community, that through the holding and promoting of events like GovHack, is growing, both in size and in what they believe they can achieve. Imagine what would happen if more people were aware of what is happening, quicker.

At the Communities Leading Change masterclass, led by American Paul Schmitz, who was a homeless youth known to police but went on to work in the White House during Obama's presidential administration on community solutions, he identified the necessity of involving the beneficiaries in community planning for the best chance of success. …

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