Nine trailblazing initiatives led by and impacting young Australians have been celebrated at the Foundation for Young Australians’ (FYA) 2017 Unleashed Awards.
The Unleashed Awards recognise young Australians who are leading and creating social change in communities, industry and public life, across the country and beyond.
The winners were announced at a ceremony at Federation Square’s Deakin Edge on Thursday 19 October.
FYA CEO, Jan Owen said the Unleashed Awards are an opportunity to recognise initiatives that give back, enrich communities and make a positive contribution to society, as well as the young people who lead them.
“These inspiring individuals and the initiatives they’re leading demonstrate the untapped potential of young people across Australia who have the talent, creativity, and ideas to create a more sustainable, equitable and prosperous society,” Ms Owen said.
“The challenges they are inheriting make it not only important but absolutely vital that we provide them with opportunities, back their ideas, and encourage enterprise to develop their innovation capacity.”
The 2017 Unleashed Award winners are:
Rookie Entrepreneur of the Year, Years 7-9 (Celebrating an innovative business, venture, or social enterprise that was created by students from years 7 – 9 at school): BCD Services
Rookie Entrepreneur of the Year, Years 10-12 (Celebrating an innovative business, venture, or social enterprise that was created by students from years 10-12 at school): Mental Music
Jumpstart Award (Celebrating a venture, social enterprise or business just starting out with a social purpose led by a young person aged 12-18): Please Fix
Local Legend Award (Celebrating a social enterprise or business led by young people aged 15-25 making a genuine impact in their local community and beyond): E-Raced (Prudence Melom)
Vanguard Award (Celebrating a social enterprise or business led by young people aged 18-29 making a genuine impact in their local community and beyond, with a significant potential to grow): Catalysr
Gamechanger Award (Celebrating social enterprises and venture led by young people aged 18-29 changing the game which has a history of genuine impact and leading changemakers of their generation): Little Dreamers
New Work Order Award (Celebrating Australian businesses, organisations and educational institutions such as Universities and Schools that a commitment to preparing young people for the future of work and the world): The Global Consulting Group
Champion of Change Award (Celebrating a public figure leading the way in social change and using their influence to make a positive difference in the community): Yassmin Abdel-Magied
Inspired Citizen Award (Celebrating young people who recognise and act on their potential to lead positive change in their communities): Stomping Out Stereotypes, Frankston High School, VIC
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Award Winners Biographies
Rookie Entrepreneur of the Year, Years 7-9| BCD Services
BCD Services offered two primary functions: distribution of goods such as pizza and beverages, and contract physical labour. BCD advertised through local businesses, school posters and announcements, and social media. With over 54 hours of physical labour and 6 business propositions over the 4 week life span of BCD Services, the students earned $1268 in total profits. 60% of profits were donated to the Cancer Council, with the remaining profits divided between the 3 business partners, leading to $169 per person income.
Rookie Entrepreneur of the Year, Years 10-12 | Mental Music
Mental Music is a podcast published fortnightly, aiming to address mental health issues among young people. The 20-30 minute episodes include youth commentary, interviews with professionals, and feature music written and produced by students. By having open and honest conversations about mental health, Mental Music contributes to the normalisation of these issues and promotes positive change in young people’s’ awareness and attitudes. This project has been run by its founder, Jordan O’dell-Fontana, for over 12 months and was pitched to local Queensland investors at Brisbane incubator lab, Little Tokyo Two.
Jump Start Award | Please Fix
Please Fix is an app that makes it simple for people to report problems like potholes or graffiti to local governments. Users just point the app at a problem and take a photo, and Please Fix does all the rest. By using Please Fix, people can become more connected and involved in their communities. You can download Please Fix from the App store.
Local Legend Award | E-Raced – Prudence Melom
E-raced is a program designed to break down stereotypes and reduce racism through storytelling. A team of young new Australians from refugee and migrant backgrounds share their experiences with regional and rural High School students in years 8 -12. These events challenge and erase negative perceptions and stereotypes that result from a lack of contact with immigrants, and as a result, build more tolerant, understanding and supportive communities. E-raced has attended over 20 schools in Queensland and was recognised in the 2015 Young Human Rights awards.
Vanguard Award | Catalysr
Catalysr runs a 4-month business accelerator program enabling unemployed and underemployed migrants and refugees to create their own business. Catalysr worked with 40 entrepreneurs from migrant/refugee background in its first year, leading to the creation of 10 new businesses. These businesses have generated over $300,000 in revenue, and 25 full-time jobs and are continuing to grow. Catalysr’s mission is to create 10,000 jobs in Australia in the next 10 years.
Gamechanger Award | Little Dreamers
Little Dreamers is a not-for-profit that recognises, celebrates, and amplifies young carers through increasing their social connectedness and participation in advocacy programs, and fostering employment pathways. Little Dreamers is the only organisation in Australia that solely works with young carers who have a family member with a serious illness or disability. The project is run 100% by young carers for young carers.
New Work Order Award | The Global Consulting Group
The Global Consulting Group (GCG) is a charity which provides pro-bono consulting services to other charities and not-for-profits. High-potential students are selected and paired with an industry expert mentor to work as consultants on varying projects. They learn core business, entrepreneurship, and problem-solving and management skills, all of which can be applied when they enter the workforce.
The organisation has over 150 concurrent volunteers and 500 Alumni across Australia. Over 120 projects have been completed for clients such as the United Nations, TEDx, Salvation Army, and the Climate Council. They partner with organisations such as Accenture, Bain, Deloitte as well as Melbourne University, UNSW and Monash Business Schools to provide their services.
Champion of Change | Yassmin Abdel-Magied
Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a Sudanese-Australian mechanical engineer. She is also a well known strong activist and changemaker in the ongoing conversation about racism in Australia. She is the author of Yassmin’s Story and, until recently, was a TV presenter on ABC program Australia Wide.Yassmin is a champion of change because she has become a household name for shining the spotlight on the divisive voices that can flood the mainstream media.
Inspired Citizen Award | Stomping Out Stereotypes, Frankston High School, VIC
“Stomping Out Stereotypes” is a project created by the Year 9 LEAD class at Frankston High School. Their mission is to reduce the impact of stereotyping in their community and through this, make a broader positive impact on issues such as bullying, racism and sexism. They have designed and implemented school workshops with local primary school students, creating new ways to educate young people about stereotypes and to inspire critical thinking. Their aim is to show their community that they can make a difference by facing up to unconscious stereotyping and changing this behaviour. For more information on their work, check out stompingoutstereotypes.com