Ameera Abdi has been elected Islington’s eleventh Young Mayor – with Areeb Ahmed as Deputy Young Mayor, and Ayokunnu Fawole as Islington’s new London Youth Assembly member.
They were elected by their fellow youth councillors on Monday 13 February 2023 and will hold office for one year. Ameera and Areeb will also be responsible for chairing the Youth Forum, as well as attending civic events and award ceremonies. Ameera will also have the casting vote in Islington’s Youth Council.
The young mayor election follows the youth council election in November when young people from across the borough voted in 14 new youth councillors to represent them.
The Islington Youth Council is elected every two years, and the Young Mayor and Deputy Young Mayor change annually to give more youth councillors the opportunity to hold office.
Ameera, who is 14 years old, said: “I feel ecstatic! This is going to be an amazing experience. I want to make my peers on the youth council proud.”
New Deputy Young Mayor, Areeb, said: “Being elected as Deputy Young Mayor has been one of my greatest achievements.”
Ayokunnu, new Member of London Youth Assembly, added: “I feel very excited. This is wonderful!”
Cllr Michelline Safi Ngongo, Islington Council’s Executive Member for Children, Young People and Families, said: “Islington’s Young Mayor, along with the rest of our Youth Council, is a vital part of our plans to make Islington a more equal borough as we strive to give all our young people the best possible start in life. Congratulations to Ameera, Areeb and Ayokunnu – I am sure they will do the borough and their fellow youth councillors proud.
“We know that young people were massively affected by the difficulties of the Covid-19 pandemic, and that many are now struggling because of the pressures brought by the cost-of-living crisis. I look forward to working with our new youth councillors to ensure that the services we provide are well-suited to what our young people need.”
Since the election in November, the 14 new youth councillors have been going through an induction process, aimed at equipping them with the skills and knowledge required to meet the challenges of their new roles.
The youth councillors will be responsible for making sure the opinions of young people in Islington are heard and will campaign for youth services in Islington to be responsive to the needs and interests of young people. The youth councillors will work with council officers and elected members to ensure young people have a key role in planning, designing, delivering and reviewing services.