VFFF Youth Advisory Group - In conversation with Andrew Taukolo


As part of our regular Youth Advisory Group Q&A series, we are excited to introduce you to Andrew Taukolo. 

Tell us a bit about you! Where are you from, what do you do, and what are some of your passions/interests?

Andrew: Malo lelei! (Hello in Tongan), I was born in Sydney and moved to QLD when I was 10 years old. Both my parents came over to Australia from the Kingdom of Tonga seeking better opportunities for us kids.

I enjoy meeting people and getting straight into deep, life changing conversations (lol!) whether it’s for ourselves or our communities. Beyond my involvement with the Youth Advisory Group, I am a Director of The AIM Foundation and a member of the QLD Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Council and The QLD Multicultural Advisory Council. Day to day, I lead a team of young people strengthening tertiary aspirations for youth from low SES rural and regional communities at The University of Queensland. Despite the various professional roles, the roles I cherish the most are those of a Husband, Father, Son, Brother and Friend.

What is your connection to rural and regional Australia?

My work over the past decade has afforded me the opportunity to interact with and support young individuals in rural and regional communities.

"I count myself fortunate for the warm reception and openness extended to me by these communities, so it only feels right for me   to bring these experiences and stories when I sit on the Youth Advisory Group."

You have been a member of our Youth Advisory Group for nearly a full term now. What has been the highlight of the process so far? 

Being part of the first ever VFFF Youth Advisory Group has been an awesome experience and blessing. Several years back, VFFF generously supported a peer-to-peer program I developed focused on fostering healthy masculinity and respectful relationships amongst young men.

Members of VFFF's Youth Advisory Group (L-R: Stephanie Pearson, Florance McGufficke and Andrew Taukolo)
Members of VFFF's Youth Advisory Group (L-R: Stephanie Pearson, Florance McGufficke and Andrew Taukolo)

"Fast forward to now, being able to contribute my insights and advocate for the opportunities I once benefitted from with VFFF feels like a full circle moment."

It's also been heartening to align with a Foundation that holds Christian values at its core. While speaking about such values is one thing, embodying them in action is another, and I believe VFFF exemplifies this commitment admirably.

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