Lower Mainland youth join inaugural provincial leadership council

December 13, 2021 at 9:05 am  BC, News, Politics

Five young local leaders have been named to the StrongerBC Young Leaders Council and will provide direct and ongoing feedback to government on priorities and policies that matter to youth.

Harry Bajwa, 22, and Noor Shaker, 16, both from Surrey, Ripdaman Malhans, 19, from Delta, Alexandra Mandewo, 17, from Coquitlam, and Jeanna Pillainayagam, 20, from Vancouver, were appointed to the 18-member council. The inaugural council received more than 250 applications.

“Young people across B.C. deserve to have their voices heard,” said Fin Donnelly, MLA for Coquitlam-Burke Mountain. “This new council will give youth like Alexandra Mandewo and others the opportunity to share their unique perspectives and contribute to decisions being made today that will affect generations to come.”

Mandewo was born in Oklahoma and has Zimbabwean roots. She is passionate about diversity and inclusion, advocating for the IBPOC (Indigenous, Black, people of colour) community as vice-president of her school’s anti-racism club. She has also established an initiative to provide career representation and mentorship for female students of colour.

“I am delighted to be on the StrongerBC Young Leaders Council and am looking forward to collaborating with my fellow council members,” said Mandewo. “I believe being on the council and bringing forward issues relating to racism, youth mental health and the recent flooding in the Lower Mainland will help the youth in my community.”

Bajwa immigrated from India at age four. He has a bachelor of commerce degree in finance, as well as a certificate in early years education from the University of British Columbia. Through his work with Mannkind Charity, he helps impoverished children in orphanages and palliative care centres in developing countries.

Shaker identifies as part of the 2SLGBTQ+ community and has lived with cerebral palsy all her life. She is committed to raising awareness of the issues faced by youth with disabilities, as well as gender identity and diversity. Shaker is interested in addressing the challenges faced by young people in areas including mental health, the climate change and affordability.

Malhans is a recipient of the Vimy Pilgrimage Award in recognition of his community work and leadership. He has worked with the Guru Nanak’s Free Kitchen to help distribute hot meals on the Lower Mainland and developed its website. Malhans interns with GrantMe, an educational consultancy group that helps post-secondary students graduate debt-free.

Pillainayagam is passionate about removing the stigma surrounding mental health. She advocates for increased support for refugees, sustainability in business and eliminating systemic racism. Pillainayagam is pursuing a degree in science at the University of British Columbia.

The council will be chaired by Brittny Anderson, the premier’s special adviser on youth. They will discuss issues that matter most to young people in areas such as education, employment, income, mental health and the environment. Issues affecting the Lower Mainland will also be brought forward to the council table.

“I’m looking forward to working with these remarkable young people to hear first-hand what is needed in the Lower Mainland to help improve their lives and opportunities,” said Anderson. “These young leaders represent some of the most community-minded young people in our province. Their input will make a difference for their peers and communities, now and for generations to come.”

Council members will serve one-year terms with the option to remain on the council for up to three terms. The first meeting is planned for spring 2022 and will be held quarterly.

“I’m glad to see the diversity of our province reflected in the membership of our first StrongerBC Young Leaders Council,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation. “The pandemic has exposed inequalities that we can’t ignore. I look forward to rolling up my sleeves and getting to work with the council to tackle the pressing issues they care about, including building an economy that works for more British Columbians in every corner of our province.”

The StrongerBC Young Leaders Council supports the B.C. government’s commitment to an inclusive, innovative and sustainable economic recovery for everyone who lives in B.C.

Learn More:

Find out more about the StrongerBC Young Leaders Council:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/economic-recovery/youth/young-leaders-council

Read the biographies of StrongerBC Young Leaders Council members:
https://www.bcpublicsectorboardapplications.gov.bc.ca/s/tribunaldetail?boardNum=A-24243

View the full article from the original source

No conversations yet

Activity Stream

Sun, Jan 23, 2022 at 9:00 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: On Lineham Ridge – Kamloops Trails
Fri, Jan 21, 2022 at 9:00 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: Snowshoeing the Bush Lake North Loop
Thu, Jan 20, 2022 at 10:01 am - David Suzuki posted on their blog: Is there a rational argument against climate action?
Wed, Jan 19, 2022 at 8:30 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: Clapperton Hill Traverse Video – Kamloops Trails
Mon, Jan 17, 2022 at 9:12 am - Your DJ created a new Profile
Mon, Jan 17, 2022 at 9:00 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: Red Hill Ramble – Kamloops Trails
Sat, Jan 15, 2022 at 9:00 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: Georgina Point Heritage Park – Kamloops Trails
Thu, Jan 13, 2022 at 10:02 am - David Suzuki posted on their blog: Rest is good, but resolving global crises means not looking away
Thu, Jan 13, 2022 at 9:00 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: Exploring the Hills in the Snow
Tue, Jan 11, 2022 at 8:30 am - Doug Smith posted on their blog: Red Rock Canyon Loop – Kamloops Trails
Full Stream

Upcoming Events

Thu Feb 24 to Sat Mar 5 WCT: Boom
Mon Feb 28 The Offspring
Thu Mar 24 to Sat Apr 2 WCT: Clean
Thu Mar 31 to Sat Apr 9 WCT: Kim’s Convenience
Thu Apr 21 to Sat May 7 WCT: Hey Viola!
Thu May 12 to Sat May 28 WCT: The Wizard of Oz
Thu Jun 2 to Sat Jun 11 WCT: Echoes of the Homesick Heart
All Events