State’s exceptional young people recognised at WA Youth Awards

  • Outstanding young people honoured at 2022 WA Youth Awards
  • Zahra Al Hilaly recognised as 2022 WA Young Person of the Year for her advocacy on gender equality, migrants and refugees
  • Eleven award category winners announced
  • Youth Minister Dave Kelly has congratulated the winners of the Youth Affairs Council of WA 2022 WA Youth Awards.

    The Awards were presented at a ceremony at the WA Museum Boola Bardip last Friday and recognise young Western Australians aged 12 to 25 years for their achievements and contributions to the community.

    The 2022 WA Young Person of the Year is Zahra Al Hilaly.

    Zahra is an Australian Representative for UN Women, Chair of the Ministerial Youth Advisory Council and was recently named the 2022 Western Australian Young Multicultural Person of the Year.

    A seasoned speaker and youth representative, Zahra has addressed the United Nations General Assembly in New York and served as a youth delegate for conferences in Italy, China and France.

    She is also an accomplished poet and writer, her stories have been published in SBS Australia, The West Australian and Vogue Australia.

    Zahra will receive $10,000 in funding, supported through Lotterywest, to deliver an impact-focused project for young people in Western Australia.

    WA Youth Award categories also recognise outstanding youth groups and organisations that serve and support the State’s young people.

    Category winners in the 2022 WA Youth Awards were:

    • Charmaine Dragun Memorial Award: Briana Fiore
    • ECU Community Leadership Award: Lucy Stronach
    • Mission Australia Young Changemaker Award: Zahra Al Hilaly
    • The Aboriginal Health Council of WA Positive Achievement Award: Akira Vickers
    • The Commissioner for Children and Young People Participate Award: Fatoumata Toure
    • The Minister for Youth’s Most Outstanding Youth Worker Award: Olivia Colja
    • The Propel Youth Arts WA Creative Contribution Award: Grace Newton-Wordsworth
    • The Y WA Collective Action Award: Dr YES
    • The Youth Focus Sector Collaboration Award: Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Services Inc.
    • The Youth Futures Innovation for a Sustainable Future Award: Alexis McDonald

    This year’s finalists included young changemakers, musicians, technologists, mental health advocates, disability activists and community leaders.

    Also among the finalists were youth workers and youth-focussed community sector initiatives including alternative schooling programs, innovative out-of-home care programs, new approaches to case management and life-changing programs supporting migrant and refugee women.

    Finalists came from all over the Perth metropolitan area as well as regional communities including Meekatharra, Albany, Capel, Bunbury, Port Hedland and Marble Bar.

    The State Government’s WA Youth Awards have been running since 1999. The Awards are delivered in partnership with the Youth Affairs Council of WA, the peak body for young people and the youth sector in WA, with support from the Department of Communities and Lotterywest.

    Category Awards are also supported by the Aboriginal Health Council of WA, Propel Youth Arts WA, The Y WA, Youth Focus, Youth Futures, Edith Cowan University, the Commissioner for Children and Young People and Mission Australia.

    As stated by Youth Minister Dave Kelly:

    “Congratulations to the 2022 WA Young Person of the Year Zahra Al Hilaly, and to all of this year’s WA Youth Awards category winners.

    “Zahra is an inspiring young leader whose advocacy for gender equality, migrants and refugees and intersectional representation has made waves across the world.

    “Beyond her impressive resume, Zahra is committed to supporting her peers, uplifting the voices of the voiceless and striving for equality and justice at every turn.

    “The WA Youth Awards celebrate the accomplishments of our State’s young people, and the people in the youth sector that supports them.

    “The Awards are a platform to elevate the work of young people aged between 12 and 25 in areas as diverse as community leadership, innovation, advocacy and the arts.

    “All of tonight’s award winners and finalists are of the highest calibre and have brought their passion, skill, and determination to make positive change in our communities.

    “Just as importantly, the Awards recognise the work of our youth workers, who are critical in the lives of vulnerable young people across the State and whose passion and dedication changes lives.”

    /Public Release. View in full here.