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Ten Outstanding Young New Zealanders Recognised For Their Leadership At The Impact Awards 2021

From the CEO fighting power poverty, to the climate justice advocate working to protect Pasifika Peoples from the devastation of climate change, 55 rangatahi across six major categories were recognised as New Zealand’s top young changemakers at The Impact Awards on Saturday night.

The Awards were held at Wellington’s Shed 6 as part of the 11th annual Festival for the Future – New Zealand’s largest leadership and social innovation summit.

Selected from 400+ applicants, each winner was awarded a share of $30,000 in prize money to help amplify their impact. Applicants aged 16-30 came from every region of New Zealand, from a wide range of backgrounds and industries.

Major categories included climate, enterprise, global, inclusion, wellbeing; and for the first time, local – which inspired not one, but five Impact Award wins on the night.

The winner lineup includes Mary Moeono-Kolio, the young Samoan professional working to support people in the Pacific Islands dealing with the devastation of climate change, Jack Keeys, the melanoma survivor raising money through community initiatives such as a gumboot marathon, and Miranda Hitchings & Jacinta Gulasekharam, the founders of Dignity delivering period equity with free and sustainable period products to people in need.

Powered by charity Inspiring Stories, The Impact Awards has recognised young Kiwis making waves in the national and global impact space for three years running.

Inspiring Stories CEO and former Young New Zealander of the Year Guy Ryan says that the courage and leadership demonstrated by these young Kiwis is something that all New Zealanders should be proud of.

"From the climate crisis to the global COVID pandemic there's no shortage of challenges that we face. All of our finalists and winners for The Impact Awards are fantastic examples of Kiwis stepping up. They're also a powerful reminder that each of us can do more to make a difference for our future."

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