Bathurst council to discuss creating a Youth Secretariat

Bathurst is one step closer to having a Youth Secretariat put in place.

The group would serve as a point of reference for organizations wishing to reach youth, act as an advocate as well as encourage youth aged 18 to 35 to relocate to, and stay in the Chaleur region.

Over the past several months, a number of consultations were held with youth in the region to determine their wants and needs as well as their vision of a Youth Secretariat.

Councillor Katherine Lanteigne and Recreational Programmer Ryan Wilbur presented a number of suggestions and findings of several focus groups to council on Tuesday, April 18th.

Suggestions include:

  • Creating a young entrepreneurs program
  • Ombudsman for youth
  • Be a "technology-friendly" community(ie:  WIFI hotspots)
  • Workshops(purchasing a home, investing)
  • Motivational speakers
  • Involving youth in regional event planning(Promenade Waterfront, Hospitality Days)
  • Create an events calendar
  • Develop a mobile app
  • Marketing the region as an attractive location for youth to live and work

Creating such a group would come with a price tag of approximately $72,000 which would include a small salary for an executive director as well as operational funds.

Mayor Fongemie says investing in the region's youth is important and that council will discuss the financial implications.

During 2017 budget exercises council created a surplus fund which Fongemie says was meant for such initiatives.

He expects the file could move forward sometime in 2017.