#MEETBYC Thomas O’Reilly
🤔❓ Did you know that Brimbank has a Youth Council? Now you do! It’s with great pleasure to introduce to you our 2021 Brimbank Youth Councillor Thomas O’Reilly!
Name: Thomas O’Reilly
Tell us more about yourself!
I am a university student studying my undergraduate degree. I hold a passion for languages as well, having had the opportunity to learn another language throughout my secondary schooling years. I am also a twin, which causes much confusion amongst our relatives!
Why did you decide to stay on in the BYC?
I decided to stay on the Brimbank Youth Council for a second term as I want to continue making a difference within our community. It is so important that young people can have a say about what happens in our councils, as we will be the ones who live out the effects of those decisions in our lifetime.
I’ve had a history of engagement through leadership opportunities, such as within the Languages department at my secondary school. As a Languages Captain and member of the Languages Club, I helped play a part in advocating for greater languages education within the college and wider community, such as through events and public speaking opportunities.
Last year I also ran for change at a grassroots level, which has provided me with a wealth of knowledge and understanding on the needs and wants of our community. I hope that as a Brimbank Youth Councillor I can continue to give a youth voice on those issues.
What are you passionate about?
My passions include strengthening communities, environment and sustainability, and infrastructure and development. More specifically, I am concerned about tackling the dumped rubbish that litters our beautiful municipality to create cleaner and safer communities.
Aside from environmental concerns, I am also passionate about the future potential growth of Sunshine. With the Melbourne Airport Rail Link, Sunshine is set to become an even busier suburb and therefore future transport links and developments should continue to reflect this in a sustainable manner.
I also believe it is important to keep our community digitally connected in a safe, inclusive and vibrant environment. I run a Facebook group with my brother where people can be kept engaged and informed on all the latest news and community updates for our local neighbourhood.
What are you hoping to achieve as a BYC member this year?
Along the Kororoit Creek, some of the rubbish that ends up in the waterways is often a result of what is littered onto the sidewalk of the trail. By placing bins in strategic locations, we can help reduce some of this pollution in a timely and cost effective way, whilst also encouraging people to use bins.
What does a better Brimbank look like to you?
COVID-19 and the upcoming Melbourne Airport Rail Link have given us a chance to observe what we have around us, and act on what the community wants to create positive changes within our municipality. I want to see a Brimbank that is more beautiful, safer and resourced. I’d also like to see a more inclusive and transparent council that values amenities, services, sustainable developments and more open green spaces.
What’s one piece of advice you have for young people who want to create change in their community?
To create change means in part to spread awareness. If there is an issue you are passionate about, start off by doing some research around the topic and gather the opinions of family and friends. That way, you will know more about the subject and have an idea of people’s differing opinions on it.