Australian Teenage Expo 2012

Teenagers and their parents will be flocking to the Melbourne Showgrounds to soak up the information and entertainment on offer at the Australian Teenage Expo 2012, from Thursday 30 August to Saturday 1 September.

Australian Teenage Expo

Organisers Sonya and Sacha with Australian Teenage Expo patrons

The event is run by Sacha Kaluri and Sonya Karras, who have been delivering educational and motivational sessions for teenagers around Australia for 13 years. Sacha talks with The Kids Are All Right about how the Australian Teenage Expo came about, and what teenagers and their parents can expect this year.

Why did you see the need for a teenage expo?

There are expos for everything, from home renovations, pets, pregnancy and babies and even travel, but there was nothing for teenagers. It’s an important time in all of our lives and young people are often lost and need help. There are so many options now for teenagers and they can get caught amongst the information. We also know parents need to know about all the services, products, career options and employment opportunities for young people.

We could not believe there was nothing out there, so we created the ‘Australian Teenage Expo’. We have both been working as professional speakers in schools all over Australia for the past 13 years and we know teenagers and what they want. We love working with young people; it ignites something inside us when we see a teenager have a light bulb moment.

What is the kind of information that teens are wanting? What is it that they most seek out at the Australian Teenage Expo?

Young people want to be educated at the same time has having some fun. We have four live performances that are not only entertaining and exciting but are educational. This year our theme is Identity, and we are looking at how young people discover who they, not only in the real world, but online as well. We encourage all of our exhibitors to be interactive and fun in ways that relate to young people.

“We want young people to have lots of fun at our event and walk away with key messages on how to best utilise all the opportunities life offers.”

Do you advise parents go with their teen? What will they get out of the day?

Stall at Australian Teenage Expo

Stall at last year’s Australian Teenage Expo

Absolutely, not only is this for young people, but teachers, youth workers and parents also walk away with so much information as well. We have lots of guest speakers talking about issues parents needed to be educated on.

This year at the Australian Teenage Expo we have a strong focus on educating parents about online safety and security as well as body image, safe driving and bullying.

And if their teenager has organised to meet up with friends, is it still worthwhile for parents to attend?

Thursday 30 August and Friday 31 August are our school days – but also anyone is welcome. Saturday 1 September is our public day. The cost to enter the Australian Teenage Expo is $5 on the weekdays and $10 for Saturday. Everything inside is free of charge and there are so many interactive things to see and do. It’s a great place for young people to come and hang out, get lots of freebies, try lots of exciting things and see our live stage with something different every 15 minutes.

What are some of the highlights at the Australian Teenage Expo?

On the weekdays we have our four live performances, with some of Victoria’s greatest young people on stage, from dancers, actors and singers to mind-blowing hip hop dancers. Saturday we have the Janoskians doing a live challenge/prank on stage. They are a YouTube sensation with more than 2 million hits.

Performance at last year's Australian Teenage Expo

Performance at last year’s Australian Teenage Expo

We are also hosting a massive hip hop and dance competition, called DEVIate. You can watch some of Australia’s best dancers (some are even about to appear on the new TV show ‘Everybody Dance Now’) battle it out live at the Expo.

Then we have the Expo stage with something different every 15 minutes, from ice cream and cupcake eating competitions to an open mic session for young people. And watching our exhibitors interact with young people will also be really entertaining.

Do you have plans to take the Australian Teenage Expo national?

Absolutely, Melbourne is home ground where we have so many networks. Each year we run this event we learn more and more. So taking the Australian Teenage Expo around Australia is our focus for the future.

Find out more by visiting the Australian Teenage Expo 2012 website.

How to get to the Australian Teenage Expo.






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