Nelson Youth Council

In 1992 newly elected Councillor Tui France came up with a concept to enable youth to have a say in the running of Nelson City, to allow their ideas to be considered sensitively and constructively. In 1996 a youth forum was established to give youth a voice,  this body became a Youth Council in 1998.

Originally the group had a maximum of 14 members, but numbers have increased to 20 to handle a significant agenda, with increased number of projects being managed by the Youth Councillors and larger budgets and responsibilities.

The purpose of Youth Council is to provide information between the Youth Council and the group of young people that they represent.  For school representatives, this means gathering issues and concerns from the students to raise at the Youth Council meeting, collecting students feedback on issues discussed, and taking information from the Youth Council back to the school environment.  Similarly, community and general representatives are asked to actively pass information between the Youth Council and their community of interest.

The Youth Council's current purpose is:

  • To give Nelson youth a real voice, so that young people can be heard and taken more seriously on issues affecting youth and to promote the development of a dynamic community for the youth of the future.
  • To promote the Nelson Youth Council and the activities it undertakes and to inform/engage the Nelson City Council, Nelson youth and the general public of issues being dealt with.
  • To bring the needs and concerns of young people to the attention of local and central government and to encourage consideration of such issues at a local, regional and national level.
  • To assist the Nelson City Council's planning processes, in relation to the provision of services and facilities with potential impact on young people.
  • To identify local youth needs and resources.
  • To provide experience of representation processes and local government to youth.

Examples of projects include

  • Consulted, collected youth feedback through a competition and provided advice on the Tahunanui Youth Park in 2011
  • Provided a youth voice throughout the year for the Stoke skate park including a media release to highlight the youth opinion on the choice of site
  • Ran a "Nelson Amazing Race" for youth week in 2011 & 2012
  • Won the Arts and Culture category at the Trust Power Community Awards 2012
  • Presented submissions on Regional Land Transport Programme, Long Term Plan 2012-22, Amendment to the Parking and Vehicle Control Bylaw and the Dog Control Policy and Bylaw
  • Collingwood Bridge mural 2013
  • Interviewing Nelsonians with a medical connection for Nelson Heritage Week 2015 (Jeff Grimmett, Moya Anderson, Annette Milligan, Brian Neill, Josephine Lewis, Rob Riley).

 Nelson City Council, 2013