• Decrease font size
  • Increase font size
  • innerUtilityPrint

Student Leadership

Year 10 students tackled casual racism and street safety at the North Sydney Student Leaders' Forum.

Two Year 10 students were honoured to represent Wenona at the recent North Sydney Student Leaders' Forum, initiated by local independent politician Ms Kylea Tink MP. With the aim of airing issues of significance to young people in the area, it brought together around 40 students from local schools, including Chatswood High, Glenaeon, Loreto Kirribilli, St Joseph's, Redlands, and Monte Sant' Angelo Mercy College.

Boarders Naomi and Ching Ha chose to present on the problems of casual racism and the lack of streetlights in North Sydney to keep students safe at night.

"This was one of the most insightful and eye-opening experiences that Ching Ha and I have ever had," said Naomi. " At first, we were nervous but as we started talking to and encouraging the other students around us, we made friends. Some students even came up to us at the end to say our issues had been really well presented," shared Ching Ha.

Each student presented their ideas, followed by a question-and-answer session, and an informative brainstorming session. Some of the other topics discussed included carbon emissions, vaping, mental health, workplace conditions, and technology.

Both students found the conference to be a valuable learning experience, teaching them the importance of speaking up and sharing their ideas. "I now feel inspired to be more aware of important social issues and to advocate for them," Ching Ha said. "Discussing the impact of racial micro-aggressions resonated with me in particular. As a young Asian girl in Australia for the first time, I have often experienced and witnessed casual racism and am keen to help find ways to address it."

"Before the conference, I actually wasn't aware that many of these topics were an issue, but I now feel inspired to be open-minded to different perspectives and motivated to take action. I have even been influenced to apply to volunteer with the refugee agency UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) Young Champions, and meet with refugees and experts to inform UNHCR's communications work," Naomi said.