Summit to discuss options for youth to stay in region

AS THE old saying goes, home is where the heart is.

After speaking to Capricorn Coast high school students, Keppel MP Brittany Lauga believes the region's young people don't always want to move away when they finish high school.

Yet, Ms Lauga said many felt they had to move for tertiary education or to kick-start a career in a bigger city.

Ms Lauga wants to see things change and hopes to put words into action next year with a region-wide youth summit.

While planning is still under way, Ms Lauga said she wanted to give students from the Capricorn Coast and Rockhampton the chance to hear about work, training and study opportunities and also listen to their priorities for the future.

Do you think creating more tertiary studies and job opportunities will keep more youth in the region?

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"It stems from my desire to engage with young people about what they see as the future of the region," she said.

"Young people don't get involved enough in politics, yet we're often talking about their future, so I think it's important we engage with them.

"I would love to see more young people stay in the region after leaving school, but they'll only stay if there's opportunities so I'm keen to look at developing those opportunities."

While the summit will focus on what opportunities are available, Ms Lauga said she also wanted to give the students practical advice about life after high school.

She said this could include tips on enrolling to vote or how to rent a house and budget.

As the youngest member of the Queensland parliament, Ms Lauga said she would also like to see people her age, or younger, also interested in politics.

"I think at the moment, particularly in state parliament, (younger people are) very much underrepresented," she said.

"We absolutely still need younger people in our parliaments, in council and in local groups.

"There's opportunities for young people to take leadership roles in all sorts of community spaces.

"Their voice is the voice of the future and we need to make sure it's heard loud and clear."

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