Blacktown City Council is proud to announce that Demi Marie Spiteri from St John Paul II College, Schofields and Riley Rodewald from OLMC, Parramatta have been appointed Youth Ambassadors for 2020/21.
“I congratulate Demi Marie and Riley for being selected as Blacktown City’s 2020 Youth Ambassadors,” said Blacktown City Mayor, Tony Bleasdale OAM.
“The Youth Ambassador program has been growing year by year and once again we had a record field of applicants and the quality of candidates was extremely high, presenting Council with a tough but exciting challenge.
“The applicants all had to go through quite an extensive interview and assessment process, made more difficult by the fact that COVID-19 saw the process being spread from April through to October.
“It’s wonderful to see so many young people wanting to be actively involved as leaders in their local community.”
Blacktown City Council’s Youth Ambassador Program has been running since 1982 and is a chance for young people to represent the youth of Blacktown City at civic receptions and ceremonies, as members of Council’s Youth Advisory Committee, attend Local Government conferences and take part in Council’s sister cities program.
Riley Rodewald has just completed Year 11 and has represented her school at the highest level in debating, Tournament of the Minds and the STEM challenge. She also enjoys athletics and volleyball at school and soccer and touch football outside school.
Riley does volunteer work for the Child Bereavement Support Group and tutoring for refugee children.
“I want to promote the diverse voices of Blacktown’s youth to be considered in the programs that shape the future of the area,” said Riley.
“I would also love to see an app set up especially for young people to help them connect with the services provided by Council and other service providers.”
Demi Marie Spiteri has also just completed Year 11 and as an accomplished vocalist-pianist has performed at a number of Blacktown City Council events and has represented her school in public speaking and debating competitions.
Demi Marie takes part in volunteer programs among local schools and has attended conferences and leadership seminars relating to issues within society. She is a recipient of the Leadership and Teamwork Long Tan Award from the Australian Defence Force and is a member of the Youth Sustainability Council.
“I want to help send a message of the great diversity, skill and talent of the youth of Blacktown City,” said Demi Marie.
“I want to use social media to set up a weekly ‘Humans of Blacktown’ post and an ‘Outstanding Young Person of the Month’ post to inspire and promote our young people.”
In announcing the 2020 Youth Ambassadors, Mayor Bleasdale paid tribute to the outgoing Youth ambassadors for 2019, Ebony O’Connor and Evan Ademovic.
“They have both done an extraordinary job in difficult times where Council asked them to extend the time in their roles due to the COVID restrictions. They both represented Council and the youth of our City here, overseas and online exceptionally well. Evan maintained his role while studying for his HSC under the most difficult circumstances.
“I am now looking forward to working with Demi Marie and Riley over the next 12-months as they represent our youth and, like their predecessors, make an active contribution to Council’s decision-making process,” said Mayor Bali.