Two exceptional young people, Hamani Tanginoa, 16, and Bassam Maaliki, 15, were last night recognised as joint winners of the Voice Award at the NSW Children’s Week Awards.
Hamani, an ambassador for YMCA NSW’s Reconciliation Action Plan, a young leader in the Camden Youth Action Team run by YMCA NSW and a past participant in YMCA NSW Youth Parliament, was presented with the Award for raising his voice on equal rights and inclusion and for inspiring young people to discover his Aboriginal culture.
“Being nominated for this award means so much,” Hamani said. “It tells me I am doing the right thing, fighting for what’s right and just – telling me to continue that fight for a better future.”
The Award – recognising young people who use their voices to bring about change and raise awareness in their communities, is based on the Children’s Week 2018 theme, Article 12 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child: "Children's views and opinions are respected. They have the right to express those views freely in all matters affecting the child and the right to be heard."
Bassam, another YMCA NSW Youth Parliament alum, was also presented with the Voice Award for his passionate advocacy for refugees, migrants and asylum seekers through the campaign he founded, #uBelonghere. This movement helps foster a culture of welcoming all.
YMCA NSW CEO Susannah Le Bron said the young recipients were a source of inspiration for everyone at YMCA NSW.
“We feel very fortunate to witness first hand just how much a young person can achieve when they are inspired,” Ms Le Bron said.
“It is particularly exciting when we see young people such as Hamani and Bassam applying skills they learned and developed in our programs and using their voices to make a real difference in something they are passionate about.”
Media: Jessica Warren P: 0408 762 703 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
About YMCA NSW
YMCA NSW is a profit-for-purpose organisation focused on healthy living, social impact and empowering young people. We operate 22 recreation centres, 63 Out of School Hours Care services and two camping locations which fund our diverse range of community programs. We’ve been creating positive change and supporting communities for more than 165 years. Visit www.ymcansw.org.au