Jesica Varela: Blacktown City Council
When working with young people, the sky’s the limit
The good Jesica does for young people is clear from the number of them who say hello when she’s walking down the street.
Her determination and commitment to her job as Children and Youth Development Officer at Blacktown City Council has made her a popular and well-known local in Mount Druitt.
Her fingerprints are on a long list of projects including the council’s youth advisory committee, Willmot school holiday programs and Mount Druitt’s Youth Week celebrations.
“I find working with children and young people a rewarding experience because it’s a wonderful stage of people’s lives,” she says.
“They’re still discovering things about themselves and the sky’s the limit.
“That creative mentality resonates with my personality and I love having these opportunities.”
Highlights of Jesica’s work include two special programs: a free music festival, The Burbs, and twice-weekly social events of the Collab Movement, which include sport, barbeques and more music.
She says she’s grateful for every opportunity to get out among the people that benefit from her work.
“My role means working directly with the community we serve.
“I’m outside every day in Mount Druitt, working with kids, schools and services.”
She says it’s humbling to be recognised by the community as a Westfield Local Hero.
“It’s ultimately about giving back and I’m very grateful that Westfield’s contributing $10,000 back to the community and to young people through the Westfield Local Hero grant.”