Youth Council represents the voice of young people in Tampere

Oliver and Venla, members of the Tampere Youth Council, see council work as an opportunity to influence the city from a young age. They want to promote young people's issues and make Tampere an even better place to live and grow up. The aim is to consult as widely as possible with all young people in the city.
Venla ja Oliver sit side by side and smile to the camera.
Oliver and Venla applied for the youth council after seeing a Wilma message about by-elections.

The Tampere Youth Council (Nuva) is a group of young people that strives to promote young people’s voices in the city's decision-making and to improve their position and opportunities to influence and participate. The Youth Council comprises of 40 young people in total. 

Oliver Priimägi, 18, is the vice-chair of the Youth Council and attends the development meetings of the City Council as a representative of the Youth Council. He also directs the activities of the Supervision of interests team and chairs the team's meetings. Oliver thinks it is important for the Youth Council to take up issues raised by young people.

Oliver feels proud of the innovative spirit of the City of Tampere.

 ‒ Here, people dare to think big and take on large projects. I want to encourageme for such things in the future, through the Youth Council and in general, Oliver says. 

Oliver Priimägi squats down on a street corner and looks up smiling.
Oliver is proud of the courage of the City of Tampere.

Venla Vuorinen, 15, joined the Youth Council two and a half years ago, encouraged by her mother. Now she plans and organises Youth Council events and represent the Council on the Education and Committee. 

Venla thinks that the best thing about Nuva is meeting other young people and promoting issues that are important to them. 

‒ For me, it is meaningful to meet young people and hear their opinions, and then take them forward. Here you can influence the issues of all young people in Tampere and those studying here, and help make Tampere an even nicer place to live and study, says Venla.

Venla Vuorinen stands on a street and looks at the camera.
As a member of the Youth Council, Venla wants to be involved in as much as possible and make young people's voices heard.

Events are one way for the council to listen to young people and their needs:

‒ Different events allow us to discuss and hear other young people's thoughts on various topics, such ad mental health and why mental health is deteriorating, especially among young people, says Venla.

In the future, Oliver and Venla want to continue influencing the city and encourage other young people to get involved in politics. The spark to get involved can be ignited at home or at school, preferably both.

Venla ja Oliver sit at a table and smile to the camera.
Oliver and Venla note that it is important for young people to make their voices heard now and not sometime in the future.

‒ I've heard a lot of talk about the need to listen to young people because we are the taxpayers and decision-makers of the future. It is important to remember that we are already an important part of this society and an influential group. We need to have a voice now and not just when we are adults, says Oliver.

‒ If you have the will and feel the need to make a difference and influence your city, then it's worth getting involved. There's always a place where you can make a difference, adds Venla.

According to Venla, being active in community affairs also increases commitment to the city you live in.

‒ In a way, you can shape the city in such a way that it's a nice place to live, grow up and possibly stay as an adult, because it's such a nice place and you've been able to develop it, Venla sums up.

Text: Ilona Reinikainen
Photos: Laura Happo
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