Issues for young people in Goulburn were thrust into the spotlight during a recent visit by the minister for mental health, regional youth and women.
On Tuesday, February 18 Bronnie Taylor MP, Wendy Tuckerman MP and invited guests took a tour of the PCYC in Goulburn.
The PCYC's Fit for Life program and other initiatives were discussed during the informal meet and greet.
In an address, Ms Taylor said the government had done a lot of talking with youth in regional areas and had come back with common themes.
"One of the biggest issues is connectivity, not just digital, but the fact that [young] people can't get around.
"They can't get to places unless they rely on their parents."
She said this was a big issue for the government, particularly when compared to public transport in Sydney where a young person could get an Opal Card and travel anywhere they liked for a few dollars a week.
The first minister for youth in NSW said another problem was the lack of jobs in regional areas.
"[Young people] want jobs and most of them want to stay in the community, but they need jobs.
Another reoccurring theme was mental health.
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"We've got some really big things to tackle," she said.
The minister discussed the establishment of a Regional Youth Task Force where two young people from each Local Government Area were chosen to represent their community.
"We make decisions with really good intent but it's actually not what they want or how they see it, so it's been really good to have that involvement," she said.
"There are some really good simple solutions we can do but it's about doing them and staying on target.
"One thing we know is that we have very high numbers of youth leaving rural and regional areas and we've got to stop that because they are the ones we need to keep in place."
Ms Taylor praised the combined effort of the PCYC, Mission Australia and other organisations in Goulburn to provide help and support for the region's young people.
"What is so important is to hear how services are working together," she said.
"Unless we have that communication, particularly in the mental health space, we are going to have some really big issues."
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