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If you’re under 30 and interested in the big issues affecting Australia’s future then YoungA21 is for you.

Watch our short video to find out more:

YoungA21 aims to:

  • give young people (under 30) a voice on issues that are important to their future

  • strengthen Australia21’s connection to the future by involving young people in determining, commenting on and participating in Australia21 projects wherever possible

  • provide opportunities for two way mentoring between young people and experienced Australia21 directors and staff

  • encourage and support young people to take on projects which will contribute to addressing the challenges facing Australia in their future.

The YoungA21 committee meets by teleconference each month to discuss projects, issues and opportunities for young people. YoungA21 is led by two Honorary Youth Advisers, Rebecca Bunn (Committee Chair) and Andy Barley, and supported by Australia21 Board members, Deb Lavis and Geoff Gorrie.

Want to join? Please email with a short description of your background and interests.




Andy Barley

Andy is the Founder and Director of SciGround, which is developing playgrounds designed to excite young Australians about science. The venture was selected for PwC’s 21st Century Minds accelerator program as one of the top STEM education initiatives. Since 2016 he has also been an Associate of YLab, the Youth Futures Lab, an engagement consultancy that puts young people at the centre to find solutions to big challenges across diverse areas including education, cities, employment, democratic participation and digital innovation. He has worked as a Science Communicator with ANSTO, the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, and as a Science Circus Presenter with Questacon, Australia’s National Science and Technology Centre. He holds a a Masters of Science Communication Outreach from the Australian National University, as well as Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Engineering degrees from the University of Adelaide.

“I am involved in YoungA21 because I believe in the ability of young voices to shape the future of Australia and the world. Too often, young people are seen as a ‘problem to be solved’. But our generation is more creative, connected and compassionate than any before it. Young people are the ones who will live in the future, so it is vital we play a central role in creating what it looks like. YoungA21 is currently refreshing how we work to connect more passionate young people to each other and into important conversations about our future.”


Ashleigh Wesseling


Ashleigh is the eHealth Project Officer at Hello Sunday Morning, a not-for-profit organisation whose mission is to change the world’s relationship with alcohol. Ashleigh graduated from Macquarie University with a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) in 2018. She was awarded first class honours for her empirical project, which aimed to develop more efficient methods of identifying clients with the potential to benefit from cognitive treatment in an alcohol and other drug rehabilitation setting. Since graduating, Ashleigh has honed her skills in research through diverse research assisting roles with the Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing at the University of New South Wales and Hello Sunday Morning.


“I got involved with Australia21 because I wanted to be a part of an organisation prioritising our society’s issues over the politics that often impede smarter, evidence-based solutions. After working and volunteering in various roles across the alcohol and other drug sector and observing the impact that our current drug policies have on our youth and our communities, I was eager to contribute to the conversation surrounding drug law reform through Australia21. Our generation is more in touch with our rapidly evolving society, and our futures will be disproportionately affected by the decisions that are made today. YoungA21 provides a collaborative and supportive environment to connect passionate young people to each other, as well as providing a platform for us to contribute to the conversations that will affect our futures.”


Australia21 welcomes the vitality and experience of young people to our organisation.

We recognise that collaboration between seasoned experience and the fresh vision of youth is critical to Australia’s future.

More information? Contact

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