The latest young political voices for Sunderland have been appointed

The Mayor of Sunderland, Coun Alan Emerson,  with new  MYPs Rachel Krajovska and Thomas Crawford and deputy MYP Lesedi Mphisa.
The Mayor of Sunderland, Coun Alan Emerson, with new MYPs Rachel Krajovska and Thomas Crawford and deputy MYP Lesedi Mphisa.
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Young people across Wearside have voted for their representatives.

Thomas Crawford and Rachel Krajovska have been chosen at the Sunderland Members of the Youth Parliament for 2016-2018.

And, their deputies will be Victoria Farquhar and Lesedi Mphisa.

Every school and youth project is invited to vote in the bi-annual elections and the 17 candidates gathered at Sunderland City Council's civic centre for the election results.

Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Alan Emerson, said: "The young people of our city have a massive part to play in shaping the future of their communities and of our country.

“We value the contribution made by every young person in Sunderland to life in our city, and support them wherever we can to share their views on the local and national political stage on the issues which concern them.”

Thomas, 17, from Hastings Hill who attends St Aidan’s Catholic Academy said: ”I want to make sure that the voices of young people are heard and play a part in the local decision making process, and will continue to campaign on issues such as racial and religious discrimination.”

Rachel, 16, a pupil at St Anthony’s Girls' Catholic Academy who lives in Grangetown said: “I am thrilled and slightly overwhelmed to be elected, but determined to do my best for all young people in the city.

“I want to get the message out that there is a whole wide world outside of school in Sunderland so get involved.”

Lesedi, 16, from Pennywell who attends Thornhill School Business and Enterprise Centre, added: "I am very excited and anxious to serve to the best of my abilities, this is a fantastic opportunity for all of us who have been elected.

"I'm really looking forward to meeting new people and thrilled about the opportunity of bringing issues like discrimination out into the open, so they can be understood and debated properly."

The UK Youth Parliament meets regularly to debate issues affecting young people's lives, with representatives from every city and region in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland taking part.

The youth parliament receives cross-party support, and was the first organisation outside of Westminster to be invited into the House of Commons to hold a debate in the chamber, following the success of a previous debate in the House of Lords.

The voting is organised by the Participation and Engagement Team at Sunderland City Council using a traditional ballot paper and the ballot boxes in schools and youth projects across the city.

​MYPs and DMYPs are also involved with the Sunderland Youth Parliament which meets weekly at Sunderland City Council's Civic Centre, to give young people 11-19 the chance to debate the issues affecting them and get involved in decision making.