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Making innovation work for good. T:@inspirechilli

Wednesday 23 November 2011

'The beginning of youth talent'

It’s really hard to put into words day one of the End Youth Homeless Conference. Sometimes I feel like a stranger from another planet when I speak, but in this conference I’ve been at home. Everything connects. What a day. From the moment we were treated to the wonderful greeting from Uncle Les, it’s been a moving, innovative roller-coaster of voices and ideas.  
I particularly loved the idea of being introduced by a comedian, which gave me the perfect excuse to try out a few well received jokes of my own about the weather (how English of me) and the way politicians in videos manage to talk while smiling. Open Talent will be a comedy show one day, so watch out disadvantaged thinking, we are coming to get you!
Or the press release: Investing in young people’s talents is integral to ending youth homelessness in Australia, the UK Foyer Federation’s Director of Innovation, Colin Falconer has told a national conference today. “Young people are one of the world’s most important resources. As a pioneering nation, Australia has the opportunity to change the way we view young people, particularly those experiencing homelessness. We must challenge the vision of young people as disadvantaged and instead fight for young people to identify, develop and promote their talents and have access to advantage” Colin Falconer told the End Youth Homelessness Conference 2011. “The end of youth homelessness is the beginning of youth talent.”
I was really moved by the two young people who came up to talk to me afterwards, who totally got it. Bright and passionate individuals – they are the future talent makers.  I loved the tweet from one of them saying ‘even as a young person I’ve underestimated young people’.
 I also found out from someone in the audience from Middlesbrough that Cook the explorer started out as a farm labourer before his own talent was spotted. Just glad that that no Maslow fans didn’t try to mug me afterwards. Maybe a bit naughty of me to orchestrate the audience to say out load, ‘say no to Maslow’, but I think they enjoyed freeing the yoke.
Following my workshop (the advantaged thinking exercise created a great buzz, as did the video when it finally played) I enjoyed an excellent presentation from Virgin’s ‘Champion’ Bee Orsini. Amazing speaker – hope we can get her to the UK to link up with our UK Champions.
I’ve met so many passionate people today, the opportunities to create a new community of practice here are mind blowing.  Australia’s got the talent – thanks to YFoundations for bringing it together. Now we just need to harness the energy with some advantaged thinking.

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