YWCA Australia believes in the power of women. Young women in particular have the power to lead change in our communities. The Young Women’s Council ensures that young women from all across Australia, from all different backgrounds, are represented within our organisation. They have a key role in advising the Board on issues that affect young women.
The Young Women’s Council provide a youth lens to the organisation, including our future planning, advocacy, policy, research, communications, membership and stakeholder engagement.
The first Young Women’s Council was elected by membership in November 2018. An opportunity to join the Council will be made available annually to all members who meet the selection criteria.
Our members are:
- Tanmaya Vivekanand
- Yusra Hasan
- Hawi Anderson
- Dara Campbell
- Hanh Lam
- Harpreet Dhillon
- Hannah McGrath
- Emiko Mori-Wiffen
- Taylor Perrin
- Aurora Sapphire Matchett
- Taliska Arentsen
- Laura Burfitt
- Georgina Morphett
- Ashley Coleman
- Freya Mulvey
- Alex Hatzivalsamis
- Lizzy Rickaby
Tanmaya is the youngest member of the Council, and you’ll usually find her singing! She says her proudest girl-power moment is any time she meets a successful, powerful woman breaking down stereotypes, and looks up to women like Emma Watson and Michelle Obama who use their platforms to talk about real issues.
Yusra is an artist – great at both drawing and photography. Her favourite feminist is Ava DuVernay, the first black female director to be nominated for a Golden Globe, and for an Academy Award. Yusra says the one thing she can’t resist is sleep!
Hawi is a 16-year old poet, who loves making connections with diverse groups of women. She looks up to Michelle Obama (her queen), as well as female police officers – which she one day hopes to become.
Dara is a huge musical fan and a natural problem solver. She has been inspired by all sorts of powerful women throughout her life, with the standouts being Maya Angelou, Hannah Gadsby, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and her mum!
Location: Sunshine Coast
Hanh is a talented photographer, who is inspired by JK Rowling – her favourite author, someone she considers wise, witty and compassionate. Hanh has worked with girls from an ethnic minority in a mountainous region of Vietnam, and was proud to teach them how to use the internet so that they could learn and explore things they don’t normally have access to.
Name a song and Harpreet probably knows the lyrics. She’s recently moved out of home and is enjoying living by herself while juggling full-time uni, TAFE, part-time work – as well as her advocacy and other passions!
Among many others, Hannah looks up to women like Jacinda Ardern, Michelle Obama and Emma Watson. She thinks that real girl-power is whenever a woman has the courage to come forward and share her story and experience. And, she can do a killer American accent!
Emiko is a linguist – she has a knack for learning foreign languages. Her own proudest girl-power moment was giving birth to her son, and she names bell hooks as her favourite feminist.
Taylor is our dancer and bookworm! Every time she travels to a new city she stops by a bookstore. She’s also a tradie – in fact, she won the National Association of Women in Construction NSW – Tradeswoman of the Year
Aurora Sapphire Matchett
Aurora’s favourite girl-power moment was when Dr Christine Blasey Ford testified against Brett Kavanaugh – because of her bravery, bigger and more impactful conversations around sexual assault could start. She can’t resist singing along to high-school musical songs and patting every dog she sees (who can?) and her favourite feminist is her mum!
Location: Port Macquarie
Not knowing the words to a song never stops Taliska – and you’ll probably believe the lyrics she comes up with, too! She’s also on the Board of YWCA Australia, and named Clementine Ford as her favourite feminist.
Laura’s everyday super powers include choosing the best meal on the menu and reverse parallel parking! For Laura, the best girl-power moment is Julia Gillard’s iconic speech calling out sexism in Parliament, and her favourite feminist is the amazing Hannah Gadsby.
No puzzle is too difficult for Georgina – she can solve jumbled words in a glance. She’s most inspired when a friend, colleague or public figure makes a decision for themselves and their priorities, rather than what might be expected of them. She also can’t say no to a good cheese!
Ashlee’s favourite girl-power moment was Julia Gillard calling out misogyny in parliament, and watching the clip go viral online. Her favourite feminist is Viola Davis because of her work with women’s shelters and inspiring battle for fair pay for women.
You could call Alexandra a natural baker – she’s strangely talented at estimating the weight of objects! (Though, don’t ask her to estimate length, height, distance or depth…) Her feminist role models are the fiercely intelligent Annabel Crabb and Jacinda Ardern.