BALLARAT'S Koby Bunney is putting his hand up to run in next year's state election.
The 23-year-old said he would run as an independent.
"I've been thinking about it for a long time – but now is the time when I can contribute the most," he said.
"I want to have a voice that's my own voice, that's representing the values that I can bring."
Mr Bunney said his concerns included the funding of aged care, disability care and mental illness.
He said his indigenous background and homosexuality should not affect people's perception of him and whether they vote for him.
"It's a youthful approach I want bring to parliament," he said.
"I want to try new things and identify what's not working.
"I see Australia as a progressive nation, but of late the brakes have been put on a bit."
"Politics isn't all about stabbing your colleagues in the back"
Previously running his own business and now studying, Mr Bunney said he wanted youth to be more involved in debates about the region and urged more young people to run for parliament.
"I love Ballarat and I want Ballarat to be represented in a way that it can be heard," he said.
"I want them to know that politics isn't all about stabbing your colleagues in the back, but it's about working with the community."
The 2014 state election will be held on Saturday, November 29.