Rangatahi voice at the CCN leadership table

Proud Samoan and Ōtautahi/Christchurch local Mahlon Saumalu started with the CCN Leadership Team in March and is bringing a rangatahi - youth perspective to the table to help improve health services for our young people. 

The youth perspective is a new role for the CCN Leadership Team, which has been put in place to ensure people and whānau from all parts of our community are at the centre of designing equitable health services. 

Mahlon works at VOYCE Whakarongo Mai as a kaiwhakamana/advocate, advocating for our tamariki and rangatahi in the State Care System. He is also a talented musician who plays at numerous events around town. 

“I love music, but I also love people - young people and my Pasifika community are my two main passions,” says Mahlon. 

Mahlon decided to join the CCN Leadership Team because he saw a real opportunity to feed back what he was hearing in his various roles working with young people. 

"I believe young people should have and do have a huge voice in the world. My role is a chance to bring a younger perspective to our health system in Waitaha/Canterbury and to make sure our young people are heard as all these decisions directly affect them," says Mahlon. 

Mahlon is looking forward to engaging with the community and rangatahi to provide some tangible feedback for the system. He says, there is no better way to engage than kanohi ki te kanohi - face to face.

“I don't have a clinical/medical background, so I'm learning as I go but loving every minute. Shout out to the team who live and breathe this mahi every day and who do all the heavy lifting! Ka nui te mihi ki a matou kaimahi hauora,” says Mahlon.

Chelsea Skinner has also joined the CCN Leadersip Team providing a youth perspective. Read more about Chelsea here

Acting Executive Director for CCN Linda Wensley, says we are fortunate to have Mahlon and Chelsea join the team.

“They are already making a substantial contribution to the Leadership Team, bringing a diversity of ideas and fresh thinking to the discussions and decisions,” says Linda. 

“Both Mahlon and Chelsea have strong connections with a range of youth networks. These relationships and views from the wider youth community will strengthen the contribution they make to the important mahi of CCN.”

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