On Monday 20 February, Mustafa Salih, 16, from upper-secondary school, Vaasan Lyseon Lukio, sat for the first time at a city council meeting held at the Vaasa Administration Building. During this term of office, the youth council finally has the right to speak and attend city council meetings.
Salih says that attending the meeting felt tense at first, but then the new representative was warmly received, and everyone came to offer their greetings.
– I quickly got a good feeling. This was a historic day for Vaasa’s youth council, and it’s a great honour for me to represent young people in the city council. The meeting itself went really quickly and there were interesting issues to discuss. I’m already looking forward to the upcoming meetings, Salih explains.
In his first council meeting, Salih took a stand on a proposal to increase the number of school coaches in basic education, among other things.
The voice of young people heard through the youth council
The youth council, operating for the 2023-2024 term of office, started its activities at the beginning of 2023.
In the elections held in November 2022, a total of 22 full members and ten substitutes were elected to the youth council. All the councillors are young people from Vaasa between the ages of 13 and 20.
The goal of the Vaasa youth council is to bring out the perspective of young people in decision-making. The youth council has representation on various boards with the right to speak and attend. The members’ task is to make the voice of young people heard, to take a stand on current issues, and to make initiatives and statements.
In addition, the youth council distributes activation money to promote voluntary hobbies.