Lanre Adebayo wants to help shape Melton’s future by sharing his experiences. The Melton West resident talks to Esther Lauaki.
What is your connection to Melton?
My wife is from Australia … we moved here from the UK to be closer to her family. Melton is where my wife, Merryn, is from.
How long have you lived in the area?
We arrived in November last year.
You have a background in defence. What was your role?
I was a program manager for the Ministry of Defence in the UK for about nine years.
What are you passionate about?
I’ve very passionate about cultural inclusion. In the UK, I was the chair of a minority, ethnic, multi-cultural community group. I would go out into the communities, into schools and secondary schools, and advise or guide them on various issues from a minority’s perspective.
How does Melton strike you?
I like the environment, the community. The people are nice. The perception from the outside of the area is that Melton is not a good place because of crime and gangs. I’ve written to police talking about what I want to do to help “African crime” in the area. I can’t change that on my own, but I want to try and change that perception of Melton. I am someone who asks questions of our community leaders: “What more can be done in terms of education of our young kids?”
If you could change anything about the area, what would it be?
More youth engagement programs for all, regardless of race. I’d like to see more people who go into schools and educate our young on how to engage in society.