Northern Territory Young Consultant Tenneil has been involved with CREATE since she attended the CREATE 2013 Conference in Canberra. Tenneil shares with clubCREATE the impact that being involved in CREATE and being a Young Consultant has made on her life.
Why is CREATE important to you?
CREATE is important to me because they were a vital part of my transitioning out of care. If it wasn’t for CREATE I don’t think I would be half the resilient person I am today. CREATE have taught me how to be resilient, strong and confident and to not be ashamed of my story.
What made you decide to become a Young Consultant?
I became a Young Consultant not long after I attended the CREATE conference in Canberra. After attending the conference, it made me revaluate my life and my involvement with CREATE, I left feeling so inspired. So I came back to Darwin, completed all 3 Speak Up programs and became a Young Consultant. I wanted to become a Young Consultant and become involved with CREATE more because I wanted to become an advocate for children living in out-of-home care.
What have been your major achievements while being a Young Consultant?
I have achieved quite a lot since becoming a Young Consultant. In 2015, I re-created a project called ‘Show me your Community’ a project I actually did when I was 8 years old through CREATE. 12 different young people from Darwin and Alice Springs all took part of project, which was creating a calendar that showcased their community. I was then able to launch the calendar at the 2015 Child Protection Breakfast here in Darwin. In 2014, the Charter of Rights was finally legislated here in the NT (yay!) I was able to chat to ABC News about my work through CREATE. Every year I chat to media regarding Child Protection Week. I have had the opportunity to sit on panels, speak to media and advocate to other government and non-government organisations about CREATE.
What has been your proudest moment?
My proudest moment would have to be, being nominated for the 2015 Northern Territory Young Achiever Awards by NT’s former CREATE Coordinator, Michelle Barry for my CREATE work. I won for the category ‘Somerville Community Services’.
Michelle also encouraged me to apply to be a part of the 2015 Chief Minister’s Roundtable for Young Territorians, which turned out to be one of the best experiences. I got to speak about what I am most passionate about and spread awareness about CREATE and Young People living in out-of-home care and some of the disadvantages we face as youth coming through the ‘system’, particularly those living in Residential Group Homes.
Any advice you would give to young people thinking about doing Speak Up?
Definitely do it! It is so rewarding and worth it. I am glad that I became a Young Consultant because I know I am making a difference to those around me and spreading awareness about CREATE.