The Commissioner engages with children and young people across Tasmania to find out what is important to them and how their lives are going. The Commissioner also helps them to have a voice in decisions that affect them – including in the development of legislation and policies – and supports them to be involved in the codesign and running of services that affect them. This includes involving young Tasmanians in the Commissioner’s own work.
The Commissioner runs two key engagement programs: the CCYP Ambassador Program and YEP! (Your Engagement Place).
The Commissioner also conducts regular engagement activities with children and young people with an experience of out-of-home care and those in contact with the youth justice system.
The Commissioner also conducts large and small-scale ad hoc engagement activities across Tasmania throughout the year to inform the Commissioner’s work and to help children and young Tasmanians understand and exercise their right to participate in decision making.
Adults interested in receiving updates on opportunities for children and young people to engage with the Commissioner and other organisations can subscribe for our YEP! emails here.
YEP! (Your Engagement Place) is a one-stop shop for young Tasmanians to locate safe and ethical ways to participate in decision making, to see the outputs and outcomes of their input into those decision making processes, and check out some of the things other YEPpers have been doing in activities promoted through YEP!
Through YEP!, children and young people can discover ways to engage with the Commissioner and other organisations and have a say in decisions that affect them. These child-friendly opportunities could include things like surveys, consultations on proposed legislative reform, helping to design services for children and young people, or writing competitions on topical issues. Young people can be involved as much or as little as they like.
YEP! is open to any Tasmanian aged up to 18 and they can register at any time of the year.
For an opportunity to be promoted on YEP!, it must be:
- open to participants aged less than 18 years (or a subset within that cohort) and living in Tasmania; and
- ethical in its approach (e.g., the opportunity must be in the best interests of children, provide a meaningful opportunity to influence, and be child-safe).
When young people are actively engaged in decision making processes, they develop new skills, gain confidence, and build networks with decision-makers. New horizons open, which may never have been considered available to them previously. Importantly, by getting involved in big decisions in civic life, Tasmanian children and young people can help change the lives of young Tasmanians – and the entire Tasmanian community – for the better; and they can feel empowered in doing so.
YEP! and the Tasmanian curriculum:
The Australian curriculum incorporates civic participation from as early as Year Three and continues to offer Civics and Citizenship to Year 12. YEP! provides students with exciting opportunities to engage in civic discourse that are of interest to them. Teachers who support young Tasmanians can subscribe to the YEP! mailing list to be notified of any potential ethical engagement opportunities that could be relevant to their students and their teaching and learning programs.
Subscribe to the YEP! mailing list
Adults, including parents, teachers, service providers and others who support young Tasmanians can subscribe to the YEP! mailing list to keep up to date with engagement opportunities being offered through the program. In this way, you can alert the young people in your lives to the wonderful activities available to them.
Listen to the Commissioner talking about YEP! in the media
During the launch campaign in May 2023, Leanne spoke to Dave on the Lifestyle Show on Ultra 106.5FM about YEP!, its benefits and what’s involved.
CCYP Ambassadors help the Commissioner for Children and Young People to understand what is important to children and young people. They meet with Leanne throughout the year to discuss key issues and also have opportunities to meet political leaders and other decision-makers at a statewide event. The CCYP Ambassador Program is open to Tasmanian children and young people aged 10-17.