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Right Here Right Now: Children & Young People Seen and Heard

This weekend the Fitters Workshop next to the Old Bus Depot Markets will be transformed into a rainbow coloured wonderland, with a spectacular installation of over 10,000 self portraits and messages by ACT School students.

The ACT Children & Young People Commissioner, Alasdair Roy, has worked with over 50 ACT Schools, preschools and childcare centres to develop this project. It celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and children and young people as active participants in our community: right here, right now.

The Commissioner asked students to draw a picture of themselves on coloured card and to write a message about why it is important for adults to listen to children and young people. The range of artwork and messages he received is insightful and illuminating, and massed together they form a stunning and vibrant display.

The self portraits will be attached to hundreds of cardboard boxes, which will be used as building blocks to construct a double helix spiral maze, co-designed by arts company Thylacine and a local architect. The installation symbolises the individuality of every child and young person, and the contribution they make to our community. Visitors can explore the colourful installation to absorb the talent and thoughts of these young Canberrans.

Right Here Right Now is an event for the whole family, with activities for children and young people including face painting, a treasure hunt and an opportunity to create a self portrait to add to the installation. A short film is being made by students from a local school about the installation, and children and young people attending the exhibition will have a chance to star in this documentary, and to provide a message on camera about why it is important for adults to listen to them.

The exhibition will be opened by the Commissioner and the Minister for Children & Young People, Mick Gentleman MLA, on Friday 10 April at 10am, coinciding with the beginning of National Youth Week, and will be open from 10am-5pm from Friday 10 to Sunday 12 April.

Right Here Right Now is proudly sponsored by VISY, and supported by the ACT Government.

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