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Volunteers crucial for Duke of Edinburgh's Award

Volunteers crucial for Duke of Edinburgh's Award: Mahuta

Youth Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta is praising the contribution of volunteers to the success of the The Duke of Edinburgh's Award.

"We have some 40,000 volunteers helping young people in Aotearoa/New Zealand alone and it is awesome to know that more than 600,000 young people actively participated as recently as 2005," said Nanaia Mahuta at the opening of the Duke of Edinburgh's Award Asia Pacific Regional events. "Aotearoa/New Zealand is a small country with a big heart and this is evident by the commitment to make The Award so highly sought after.

"Volunteering is a crucial part of the Award's success, so the experienced support young people get when they're taking part in the programme, is invaluable, and will hopefully encourage them to become tomorrow's volunteers."

The event brings together delegates from around the Asia Pacific region for a week-long event, which will include the Regional Board Meeting and a Regional Training Workshop. The events will have a special focus on The Challenge - a programme that provides young people with an opportunity to focus on service, learn new skills, and raise their confidence.

"The events are all offer opportunities to inspire, celebrate success and share experiences, as well as fostering relationships within our region, which is particularly important," said Nanaia Mahuta. "The Ministry of Youth Development has been funding The Challenge for the past five years and I realise there is a demand for such a programme for young people in our community.

"It's heartening to see that we can make a difference in our communities, because I know the benefits are there for young people. It's also great to share our experiences with our neighbours in the Asia Pacific region.

"As Minister of Youth Affairs I have a keen interest in seeing young people achieve and develop the knowledge and skills which I'm sure will help them reach their potential, and fulfil their dreams."

ends

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