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App aims to help young B.C. voters make election decisions

Citynews 1130 Vancouver

Last Updated Oct 21, 2020 at 12:24 pm PDT

Laef Kucheran, a 19-year-old aspiring journalist, is the founder of Vote Mate. (Courtesy Vote Mate)
Summary

A young man from Burnaby is hoping the app he created will come in handy when it comes to youth casting their vote

VoteMate outlines and compares different party platforms during elections

Laef Kucheran started the site five years ago, when he was 14, to help educate and encourage his peers

BURNABY (NEWS 1130) — A young man from Burnaby is hoping the app he created will come in handy for youth casting their vote in Saturday’s provincial election.

Laef Kucheran, a 19-year-old aspiring journalist, is the founder of VoteMate — a site that outlines and compares different party platforms during elections.

He started the site five years ago, when he was 14, to help educate and encourage his peers to get out and vote after noticing many seemed uninterested in politics.

“As long as I can remember, I’ve been incredibly interested in, not politics, per se, but in government, and democracy, and news. But I always found that a lot of my friends weren’t. They didn’t have the time. They found new to be stressful, anxiety-causing, depressing,” he said.

“They weren’t quite so engaged in politics. And when as person after person I knew became 18 and could vote in an election, they had no idea who to pick and oftentimes didn’t vote just because they didn’t know anything about the options.”

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Kucheran wanted a clear and direct way to outline policies that voters care about, without them having to dig through countless announcements made by politicians.

“The idea of VoteMate is that it’s a website with every policy, everything you need to know about all the candidates and parties, all together in one place, but without all the politicking,” he added.

He said the site is important now more than ever amidst the pandemic — when people have less access to party leaders.

More voter information is available at Elections BC.