Arman Cakmakcioglu 19, Bachelor of Science Student, Glen Iris

Arman thinks independents can truly represent their communities. 

It is painful to see how the decision makers of this country constantly neglect the issues I care about. 

As a young person, I am scared about climate change and the burden of inaction on our future. 

We have been taught about the climate crisis and how a reduction in carbon dioxide levels is crucial to preserve the health of our planet. We have grown up witnessing extreme bushfires, flooding, and the deterioration of the Great Barrier Reef - catastrophes exacerbated by our changing climate. 

I am frustrated how science is constantly overlooked and the burning of fossil fuels is still deemed appropriate. 

When it comes to colossal problems like climate change, I think young people feel powerless because they are so disconnected from the decision-making process. 

"I joined Dr Monique Ryan’s campaign because she is the bridge connecting our concerns to real, impactful decisions that will be made in parliament. It is refreshing to find a leader who values the opinions of those she represents."

I also find comfort in Dr Ryan’s career as a paediatric neurologist. I think young people are sceptical of career politicians and wonder if they have genuine intentions in representing their community. 

Having been a patient at the Royal Children’s Hospital, I have an incredible amount of respect for doctors’ devotion to healing others. I feel I can really trust Monique. 

Independents appeal to me because they don't have to conform to a party agenda. They can truly represent the issues that are important to their community and hold the major parties accountable. Monique’s commitment to establishing a federal anti-corruption commission is important to restore integrity in our political system.

Volunteering for this campaign has made me hopeful. It is clear people want change. They are frustrated with our government’s lack of action on climate and integrity and feel their concerns are not being represented in parliament. 

That is why, for my first ever vote in a federal election, I will be voting for Dr Monique Ryan.

The Kooyong connection

I grew up in the area and feel part of the community. 

Footy team

I’m a pies supporter but not a huge follower. I like to play the piano. Occasionally, I play the organ at a family friend’s church when the organist can't play. I’m not religious, but I love church music and it’s really fun.