Retiring youth council leader proud of work

Brittnee Colbourne is stepping down as Colac Otway Shire Youth Council chairwoman.

YOUTH leader Brittnee Colbourne says her time on Colac Otway Shire’s Youth Council has given her a sense of pride and achievement.

Brittnee has graduated from Colac Secondary College and will step down as Colac Otway Shire Youth Council chairwoman at the end of the year after four years on the council.

Brittnee said highlights from the past four years included revamping Colac’s skate park, last year’s family fun day at Bluewater Fitness Centre, visits to aged care centre Mercy Place and annual hikes along the Old Beechy Rail Trail with fellow councillors.

“Starting out back when I was in Year Nine, I never imagined all the things we could’ve achieved,” Brittnee said.

“I guess my highlight of the year was Mercy and helping out at the Straight Shooters event and things like that,” she said.

“And it was just exciting, it was the biggest group of Youth Council we’ve had and a lot of them were young – we’ve never had that many young people so it was really nice interacting with the younger side of the youth and getting their views across.”

The youth group also organised a road trauma talk with Bannockburn’s Robinson family, who spoke to Colac Secondary College students about their son Luke’s death in a speeding incident; helped with this month’s Pat Tibbits memorial concert; and met with Western District Employment Access consultants to discuss issues young people faced entering the workforce.

Brittnee said she had thought about continuing as a non-student member of the Youth Council, but decided it was time to move on.

She thanked Youth Council mentors Chris Smith, Terry Woodcroft, Katherine Attrill and Cayley Robinson, as well as her English teacher John Wallace who encouraged her to join the group in Year Nine.

“I guess with work commitments it would just become too hard,” she said.

“After four years it becomes a big part of you so it was hard to walk away.

“I’m now looking forward to seeing who’ll be the new chairperson and I’ll help out any way I can.”

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