Archive | November 2013

On Friday 1st November we had the very first Our Voice: Sustainability conference for young people by young people!

Over 300 students from 17 schools and preschools in the Northern Rivers region came to the Lismore campus at Southern Cross University to share their ideas about the environment and sustainability. The conference was very successful and provided an opportunity for these students to present their ideas with song, story, video, drama, computer virtual worlds, games, various workshops and discussion forums.


Conference participants sharing their ideas about the environment and sustainability on our graffiti wall.

Have a look at the video put together by our preschool participants from Bumblebee Early Education Centre in the following link:

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We had a ‘snow ball’ game at the closing of the conference where students wrote down things that they wanted to share after attending the conference, then they screwed up the paper and threw it into the crowd for others to read. Here are some comments from students as part of our ‘snow ball’ activity:

“Attending the conference has made me more motivated about the environment and even though I am one person I can be a big help!”

“Everyone can make a difference and with the help of others we can change the world”

Please add a comment to share your experiences 0f the day!


Our inspiring Keynote Speaker – Amelia Telford

Amelia is a young woman (19 years) from the Bundjalung nation (North Coast of NSW) and has a passion to care for and protect the future of our environment. For the keynote speech, Amelia treated the students at our conference to an inspirational account of her work relating to climate change and sustainability. She is now working as the Indigenous coordinator at the Australian Youth Climate Coalition in Melbourne, reaching out to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth to encourage climate action and provide opportunities for all young people to share their voice about the environment and sustainability. Amelia reflected on her experience as a student at Trinity Catholic College in Lismore, where she became involved with her school environmental committee. This involvement at school level sparked a long-lasting commitment to the climate movement. She presented her photos at the conference of her experience traveling to Antarctica as part of the 2041 Antarctic Youth Ambassador program that changed her life and her awareness of the impact of climate change. She encouraged the students as part of her presentation at this conference to take action on climate change and to stand up for a safe climate future.


Some of the comments on the ‘snow balls’ relating to Amelia’s speech included: “How inspiring youth are”;  “networking is vital to sustain action”; ”we are not alone”; “we should set up an environmental centre at our school” and ‘small steps equate to change”.

Amelia taught the audience a dance about climate change that was very much enjoyed: A student wrote on a snow ball that one of the most enjoyable things about the conference was learning how to do this dance! Another student said “I like the dance, it was cool!”

Thank you Amelia!