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It's Your Tomorrow

It’s Your Tomorrow is the message to the young people of the Territory for this year’s NT Youth Week, with nine days of events created by, and for, Territorians aged 12-25. And with so much creativity, passion and straight out fun on the to-do list, the Territory’s tomorrow is looking mighty bright.

By Anna Dowd

For 2021 NT Youth Ambassadors Sunny Liu and Emily Ford, having a dedicated week to celebrate the energy and ideas of young Territorians is a top-notch idea.

“We as young people are the true embodiment of the future,” says Sunny, a 24-year-old student doing her Masters of Teaching.

“We can take charge of the present, as well as what we want for ourselves and our community in the future.”

As a relatively new Territorian, Sunny says she was struck by how close knit, welcoming and supportive of new ideas the community in the Top End was.

“As a CDU student, I was part of an initiative during COVID started by international students and graduates called The Kindness Shake, that provided meals to students that might be suffering financial hardships from losing their jobs during lockdown.”

“It was amazing to see the support we got very quickly from businesses, the university and the NT Government.”

When it comes to opportunity, Emily Ford wholeheartedly agrees.

“There’s a lot of opportunities for young people in the NT, and a lot is possible,” says the 22-year-old Bak Mak Mak Marranunggu woman from Kurrindju, 400 kilometres south of Darwin.

“It’s a relatively small population, so there’s not that competitive thing so much. We build each other up here.”

Emily also acknowledges there are some things about being a young person that can be really hard.

The annual Couch Surfing race, presented by Anglicare and City of Darwin’s LAUNCH team, is a great way to shine a light on an issue like youth homelessness. Anyone can join in, with teams decorating their chosen couch-on-wheels for a high-energy race to the finish line.

“I haven’t made it to this in previous years so I can’t wait, it’s such a cool idea. It looks like so much fun, and such a good way to bring attention to a really important issue for young people.”

This year, LAUNCH Darwin has a bunch of other mega fun free events. Darwin’s hot skate culture can bust it out at the annual Street Heat Skate Comp, before flipping the thermostat down for an eve of ice-skating and games.

For art lovers, head down to Nightcliff Foreshore for the sunset launch of CITYLIFE Platform Lightboxes, featuring the work of nine of Darwin’s young up-and-coming artists illuminated in outdoor lightboxes. Film buffs are also catered for, and can sink back into a deckchair and get inspired by a free screening of Miss Juneteenth at the Deckchair Cinema.

According to Emily, having fun, meeting new people, and talking up the awesomeness of NT youth are a pretty good way to pack out a week in April.

“I’m genuinely excited about young people and especially young people in the NT. It’s going to be great.”

NT Youth Week

Click here for a huge list of NTYW activities, and Get Involved!

#NTYW2021 #YouthNT #ItsYourTomorrow #NTYWDarwin #NTYWPalmerston #NTYWKatherine #launchdarwin #yopalmy

Inset: 2021 NT Youth Ambassadors Sunny Liu and Emily Ford. Artworks featured from City of Darwin’s CITYLIFE Platform Lightbox exhibition. Top L-R: Merlin Martin, 'Shape Shifter' (detail). Eren Fraser, 'Don't Stare! Go Help!' (detail). Bottom L-R: Tisha Tejaya, 'Bait' (detail). Chlarisse Bala, 'Artificial choices within certainties' (detail).

Thumbnail & header: Colby Thomas, 'Heavy City'. Featured in City of Darwin’s CITYLIFE Platform Lightboxes Youth Week exhibition.

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