Interview with The Bold Source team
Q1. Tell us a bit about your project!
The Bold Source is a youth-led magazine for young people who are connected to the western suburbs of Melbourne. We are based in Sunshine and are supported by Brimbank City Council and Brimbank Youth Services.
Our editorial team is composed of talented young people who are passionate about writing, making connections in our local community, and representing young people in the media in an accurate and positive light. We want our magazine to showcase the creativity and knowledge of young people.
Our first issue is about Advocacy, which collects diverse stories from young people creating change in their communities. We just published this issue online—check it out!
Q2. How or why did you choose your focus? What was the change that you want to see?
Young people are often not heard or taken seriously in mainstream and traditional media. We wanted to provide a platform for youth that celebrates and acknowledges the importance of our voices and our role in society.
In the past, before The Bold Source was created in early 2019, the Brimbank Youth Ambassadors published a monthly e-newsletter called The Westies Y-Link. This featured a list of local opportunities available to young people, including jobs, events, programs and volunteering.
The newsletter was fantastic, and became a project that captured the stories and experiences of young people. We chose a magazine because the format requires a community of creators. This gives everyone the opportunity to be trained, to learn from each other, to develop their voices and to pursue their artistic endeavors—all while empowering them as young people.
Our focus is to provide a space where we can share young people’s authentic stories and unique perspectives. We hope to showcase the passions of our contributors while advocating for youth-led representation of young people's voices.
Q3. Have you seen any change as a result of your project? Why do you think that is?
We have seen a multitude of changes over the course of this project, and arguably the most important has been the growth of our editorial team. Since opening submissions for our first edition, a number of our contributors were eager to become more involved with The Bold Source, which has expanded the creative community we had originally envisioned.
The other biggest change has been the development of the skills needed to work on a magazine. This includes learning how to edit, learning how to promote a magazine, and how to grow our network within our community. Developing these skills, and the community interest in our project, demonstrate how important it is to have a magazine for young people by young people.
Q4. How was support gained from the community? How has your project been received?
We are so grateful for the support we have received so far. We have the Sunshine Library to thank for providing a space for our meetings. We also received a lot of support from members in the art community, who have provided guidance on how to create a magazine. Some honorary mentions include The Lifted Brow, 100 Story Building, and Footscray Community Arts Centre. We are excited to see how the wider community receives our work when we launch our first issue!
Q5. What has encouraged you to be involved in this project and what has this meant for you?
Sacreana: I joined because I’m interested in photography and creative writing. I was told about this group through Brimbank Young Research and knew I had to join. This project inspires young people and gives them opportunities to speak and have their opinions heard. Young people’s voices can be so powerful if they are given encouragement. I joined spontaneously, but I don’t regret it. I learned new skills and made new friendships.
Haylee: I personally joined The Bold Source to make friends and to express my opinions and creativity. When I first joined, I was in a bit of a rough place with my mental health, and I didn’t believe I was good enough for people. Joining The Bold Source helped me get through those emotions, and I am doing a lot better today. This magazine gives a sense of social connection and community that’s important.
Lily: Being a part of the editorial team has been an opportunity to work with other creatives for a local initiative that I believe in. I want to encourage comics and drawings as a powerful form of story-telling. The Bold Source is a great platform to inspire young people to showcase their artworks to the world, and to build, start, and ignite their creative pathways. Sometimes you have to be fearless and show your art to the community so others can support you.
Samantha: I was thrilled to join the team at The Bold Source because of my love for literature. After having my work published, I wanted to gain experience as an editor. Writing is the way I share who I am and my values with the world. I gravitate towards pieces about social justice issues because I strive for change and a better world for all. I want others to feel my words and to give them something that they can relate to.
Q6. What is the long term desired outcome of the project?
The vision of our magazine is to provide a safe and welcoming environment for the emerging voices of the western suburbs. We hope to encourage the growth and confidence of artists, and supply the resources for them to explore their artistic interests. We want to prompt young people to interrogate the world around them, and to provide a platform that utilizes the power of art as a gateway for dialogue. Our intention is to spread enriching art across the inner and outer west.
Our desire is to uncover the art of young people to transform the the communities they’re from, with inspiration, healing, and change.
Q7. What does leadership mean to each of you? Who has inspired your leadership & how do you put it into action?
Sacreana: A leader is like a current within an ocean. The choices they make affect everything within that area and pull others along with it. I especially look up to Christopher Bang Chan, a k-pop artist who has had to make difficult choices for himself and his bandmates. What I learnt from him is that, regardless of your hardships, stay positive and smile. There is no use in dreading over little things. They’ll eventually pass.
Haylee: Leadership means I can encourage myself and others to get inspired and do something that is special and meaningful to them. A person who has inspired me is an actor named Aidan Gallagher, who is a UN Goodwill Ambassador. I am inspired by the work he does for climate change.
Samantha: To me, leadership is about taking responsibility, showing commitment, and being able to work well within a team. My previous English teacher inspired my leadership by helping me understand my capabilities and my dreams. I aspire to become a novelist and to one day become an English teacher who can inspire others the way he inspired me. I want to always be passionate about the work I do and to have self confidence in the fact that I can achieve anything I set my mind to.
Q8. What is your decision-making process?
Our editorial team makes decisions together, and work collaboratively on editing pieces, planning events, and deciding on our future direction. We approach discussions with open minds. We know that what makes our space special is respecting everyone’s difference. People are more comfortable to express their opinion when they know they will be heard.
Throughout our journey so far, we have used this strength in our team to overcome roadblocks and to have fun along the way.