The YMCA QYP is a fantastic opportunity for youth to create real change in Queensland. Youth Members are the voice of young people in their electorates, advising politicians and decision-makers across the state. They’ll also be immersed in unique educational opportunities; experiencing parliamentary operation first hand; mingling with members of Government and Opposition; and having their say in fiery debates about topical issues.
Beyond bridging the gap between legislators and youth in Queensland, QYP also provides an outstanding opportunity for personal development, be that in leadership skills, public speaking ability or the lifelong friendships forged throughout the experience.
A volunteer team of young people work together to bring the program to life. Led by a Program Coordinator, 18 past participants are trained, licensed and supported by the Brisbane YMCA to ensure that this is truly a premier youth event – organised by youth, for youth.
Anyone aged 15-25 with a passion for change can nominate for QYP. All you need to have a great time in the program is some enthusiasm – we’ll teach you all you need to know about parliamentary debate, Bill writing, dealing with the media and more! Like the real Queensland Parliament, however, we can only select so many Youth Members, so if you miss out on your first attempt, we’d love to hear from you again the year after.
Absolutely. We will do anything and everything in our ability to cater for any physical, mental or other disability – feel free to give us a call or flick us an email to ask about your specific situation.
QYP runs annually from March – October, and is now entering its 25th year. 93 Youth Members are selected from nominations every year, and competition is fierce.
The cost to participate in Queensland Youth Parliament is $500 for each Youth Member. This is an all-inclusive package price, and includes accommodation, meals and transport between Camp North Pine and Parliament House during both residential events. Whilst this fee does not cover transport to and from Brisbane, we are able to assist rural and remote Youth Members in seeking travel reimbursement from the YMCA.
Being a Youth Member is a unique chance to create change, so Federal and State Members of Parliament, youth groups, clubs such as Rotary and Lions and local businesses are often willing to sponsor some or all of the participation costs. Just in case the deal wasn’t sweet enough already, once you’ve been selected as a Youth Member, we’ll send you a Sponsorship Pack with heaps of tips, ideas, templates and pointers for approaching your community for support.
QYP runs throughout the year, so you’ll usually have a few months to complete anything that the program requires of you. You’ll also be working alongside other Youth Members in your Department, so the workload is often a shared one. Many full-time university and high school students have completed the program without difficulty, so you certainly won’t be losing sleep over QYP.
However, it is expected that once you agree to commence the program, you remain engaged in it until the end – you have been selected over other similarly outstanding youth in your electorate, and to pull out is to do a disservice to them, and to yourself.
Well, you’ll start by meeting each other and the Exec at Launch Weekend in April. After you split up into your committees, you’ll get to work with your Mentor: brainstorming, researching, writing, editing and submitting a Bill and Amendments to deliberate in Parliament. Come late October, you’ll see each other’s smiling faces again at Residential Sitting Week, when Youth Members take over the Legislative Assembly Chamber of the Queensland Parliament. Over the course of 4 days, lively debate, interjections and banter fill the Chamber as each committee presents their Bill for debate and possible amendment.
Every participant also gets a two minute chance to talk about an issue of their choice, usually one of personal experience or one relevant to their electorate.
After you’ve debated each of the Bills you have created, they will be passed to the Youth Governor for their assent to become Youth Acts. After this, the Youth Acts are then handed directly to the Premier for distribution to Ministers and Members of Parliament for their consideration.
Certainly not! There are no pop quizzes on the Cabinet makeup or the parliamentary process, and in the capable hands of the Exec, you’ll learn everything you need to know in sessions throughout the year.
Absolutely not! But we really don’t mind – as long as you leave partisan politics at the door, you’ll fit right in at QYP.