By Monique Kuzeff
“What does it take to engage every young adult in regional Australia?” This was the “million dollar question” that prompted Albury woman Jenny Bevis to form her initiative The Vibe Collective.
With this question in mind and a background in events and community festivals, the 28-year-old sought to establish an initiative that would create a regional community of highly engaged young individuals who are supported by their local community.
In 2015, while studying a Bachelor of Business at La Trobe University in Wodonga, Ms Bevis formed her initiative and took out first place at the national Big Idea competition.
Following this, she was then selected to take part in an international program, The China Australia Millennial Project (CAMP), to represent Australia and the Albury Wodonga region in China.
CAMP, which commences this week, is a 100-day program that aims to bring together young delegates from across the world to build international alliances, identify shared challenges and empower future leaders to create new solutions to current issues.
Ms Bevis said this opportunity would “enrich” her skills and experience and encourage her to make her local enterprise a reality.
The Vibe Collective is expected to run a program from July to December this year, taking on board 10 local young people who are seeking to start-up their own initiative and make a difference in their community.
“The CAMP will have a flow-on effect on another 10 young people who will participate in our upcoming program,” Ms Bevis said.
“I’m currently working with two other young people, a psychologist and a teacher, to implement the knowledge I will get from the CAMP in to The Vibe Collective program.
“We are currently working on ideas for the program that will run from July to December, and I know CAMP will be a very useful tool to help further the initiative.”
However, while Ms Bevis has received a CAMP scholarship valued at $2200, the total cost of the program is $7750, so she has set up a Go Fund Me page with hope that she is able to raise a further $5550 to cover the cost of the program.
“The Vibe Collective is a very effective way to bring people together, and therefore it could become this ripple effect of young people, curious who ask what the event is funding,” she said.
“It’s funding a workshop for local young people to help them create an initiative of their own.”
Ms Bevis said often when a young person moved to a regional area for study they often left the area once they had completed their study because of the lack of employment and career opportunities.
“When you move to a regional area, it’s really hard to connect but also you’ve got other social issues for young adults such as finding employment or a solid career path,” she said.
“So essentially what we want to do through The Vibe Collective is create a platform for young people to come together and build social capital and engagement.
“The end game for us is to see that we’ve created a culture of collaborative learning but also offer fun creative events and workshops where young people are hosting initiatives of their own.”
Ms Bevis will be flying to China on Sunday 20 March. Her Go Fund Me page can be accessed via www.gofundme.com.JennyBforCAMP for anyone interested in supporting Ms Bevis and The Vibe Collective.