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Lakes Entrance local Jedda Patten proudly represented her home town as she rubbed shoulders with the nation’s leaders in Canberra last week. Jedda was introduced to Prime Minster Malcolm Turnbull by Member for Gippsland Darren Chester (pictured), at a function for the National Indigenous Youth Parliament program participants.

Jedda, 23, was one of 50 young Indigenous Australians – six from Victoria – to participate in the NIYP, which included an chance to learn about parliamentary processes, attend Question Time and meet Members of Parliament.

Jedda was selected for her leadership in advancing clan-based treaty talks in her community. She is dedicated to carrying on from her Elders’ strength and knowledge, and wants to be a role model in her community.

The NIYP included a two-day simulated parliament at Old Parliament House, where the youth parliamentarians debate bills on issues they have identified as important to their communities, such as education and employment, improving access to drug and alcohol rehabilitation, human right and mental health.

The final bills will be presented to the Australian Government for consideration in policy making. (PS)

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