In October 2018, Dr Kirkham established the Menzies Youth Working Group to enhance collaborations and synergies between research initiatives in youth health at Menzies. This led to discussions around the need to meaningfully incorporate youth perspectives in the work that we do. It was acknowledged that while we strive to include and amplify youth voices in our research, many opportunities exist to improve these processes. In response to this, the Youth Working Group developed the Youth Health Summit (YHS) to provide youth from across the Northern Territory (NT) an opportunity to voice their main health and wellbeing concerns. The YHS was funded by HOT NORTH and the NT Primary Health Network and held on 19 and 20 September 2019.


The YHS provided an opportunity for young people, researchers, policy makers, service providers and other key stakeholders to come together to establish better ways of engaging with young people, and to co-create research priorities for youth health and wellbeing in the NT.


The YHS was held over one and a half days in September 2019. Young people were invited to attend a half day workshop laying the foundations for ‘what is research’ and setting expectations for the following day. Youth, health professionals, researchers and policy makers came together for the main event. Over the two days, 107 people from across the NT attended; including 29 young people from the Darwin region, Katherine, Nhulunbuy, Galiwin'ku and Alice Springs. Attendees gained important insights around youth health and wellbeing in the NT, with fantastic presentations from: inspiring young people such as Magnolia Maymura; leaders in adolescent health, including Pete Azzopardi; and youth who attended Adam Drake’s workshops on the day. An outcome of the day was co-creating the NT Youth Health Declaration, which identifies the top four priorities for youth health and wellbeing.

Chief investigator:

For further information contact Renae via email.


The event was supported by:

  • NT Youth Round Table
  • Balanced Choice
  • Anglicare NT 
  • Darwin City Council
  • Education Change Makers

​Stall holders:

  • Headspace
  • Sexual Assault Referral Centre 
  • National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre 
  • Menzies HealthLAB
  • Anglicare Youth Services
  • Sexual Health and Blood Bourne Virus unit 

Essential individual contributions were also made by: -

  • Rachael Buckley: Adolescent Clinical Nurse Consultation at Royal Darwin Hospital
  • Monique Ah-Sam: Administration support for the YHS 
  • Menzies Biyamarr ma team
  • Menzies HealthLAB
  • Presenters: Magnolia Maymuru, Renae Kirkham, Jade, Josie Povey, Taliyah Millen, Jahdai Vigona, Blair McFarland, Rachel Buckley, Louisa Bahen-Wright, Sean Rung, Isiah Johnstone Hodshon, Pete Azzopardi
  • Panel members: Hannah Illingworth, Sean Xiao, William Baird, Melanie Gunner, Roxanne Highfold, Kim Mulholland
  • Members of the Youth Working Group, including: Natasha Freeman, Sarah Clifford, Sean Rung, Emily Gilbert, Athira Rohit, Anthony Merlino, Josie Povey, Marita Hefler, James Smith, Angela Titmuss, Kim Farrar, Anthony Gunther, Heidi Smith-Vaughan, Nicole Boyd, Yomei Jones, and Tina McDonald
Inaugural Youth Health Summit, September 2019
Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre, Darwin, NT.