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Rotorua Youth Spirit Award Winners Announced

Embargoed Media Release, Monday 10 September 2012
STRICTLY EMBARGOED until 8:00pm, Monday 10 September 2012

Youth Spirit Award Winners Announced

Kelsey Horne from John Paul College has been named as winner of the inaugural 2012 TrustPower Rotorua Youth Community Spirit Award.

The TrustPower Youth Community Spirit Award recognises secondary school students’ service to school and community. The Award will be presented at an event on Monday 10 September at Blue Baths.

To be considered for the TrustPower Youth Community Spirit Award students had to have given service to school or community projects, treated others with care and respect and been a good ambassador for their school and the region.

Local high schools were asked to recommend one student to be considered for the Award. The other four finalists for the award were Jessica Drysdale from Reporoa College, Mamaeroa Merito from Rotorua Girls’ High School, Adam Bow from Rotorua Boys’ High School and Rarua Tahuriorangi from Rotorua Lakes High School.

In partnership with this award, Waiariki Institute will present a special award to Mamaeroa Merito who has been chosen as the winner of the inaugural Waiariki Institute Outstanding Project Award.

For winning the TrustPower Rotorua Youth Community Spirit Award Kelsey received a framed certificate and $500 prize money, with $250 going to her personally and $250 given to a community group or organisation of Kelsey’s choice, which will be announced at tonight’s Awards. Mamaeroa also received a framed certificate and $500 prize money for winning the Waiariki Institute Outstanding Project Award, with $250 going to her personally and $250 given to a community group or organisation of Mamaeroa’s choice – which again will be presented at tonight’s Awards.

Kelsey Horne is an impressive young lady who truly knows the value of community spirit. As Deputy Head Leader at John Paul College this year she leads by example!

At her school she is part of the John Paul College Interact Club fundraising for needy people in the community, she is the coach of the winning junior girls water polo team, coach of the John Paul College Intermediate Water polo team and coach for the under 12’s representative water polo team. Kelsey is part of the Lasallian Youth gathering committee and the mentoring committee. She is involved in many cultural activities including Stage Challenge, school productions, gaining her grade eight for Speech and Drama and was the winner of the Chanel shield for impromptu speaking.

But her reach doesn’t stop there; she spreads her love out into the community as a Senior Leader at the Lakes Ranch Children’s Camp, where she volunteers for one week of every school holidays. She says she finds great satisfaction in seeing children’s personal growth and encouraging them to achieve their goals. She volunteers for Plunket, Red Cross and Daffodil days and was a member of the John Paul College Relay for Life team. She also is a referee for Rotorua Flippa Ball.

TrustPower Community Relations Representative Teresa Partridge says Kelsey is very outgoing and hardworking, with the ability to help people through encouragement until they gain success.

“Kelsey’s school says she give her all to whatever she undertakes and receives respect and hard work from those around her. She is focused on school but also the wider community, spending many hours coaching and fundraising for others,” says Mrs Partridge.

Mamaeroa Merito is an all-rounder student who works tirelessly on a range of activities both at school and in her community. To begin with Mamaeroa is a year 13 prefect, a member of the Executive committee for Kahui Rangatahi – the Maori student council. She is involved in the school debating team, stage challenge, wearable arts and the school Kapa Haka group that has won two regional competitions and placed second nationally.

Mamaeroa has a strong sense of community which is exemplified in her participation in a suicide prevention strategy for youth. She has worked with Kia Piki Te Ora which is a suicide prevention organisation that is committed to raising awareness around the issues related to suicide. Mamaeroa has designed a suicide prevention tool for youth to promote well-being and health. The idea of a wristband, initiated by Mamaeroa, was launched at a National Suicide Prevention Conference and in January this year a group of Papakura High School students met with Mamaeroa to discuss its implementation in their own school. She is also an active member of the Ngati Pikiao tribe and participates in a wide range of activities.

Acting Chief Executive for Waiariki Institute, Keith Ikin says Mamaeroa is someone who consistently motivates and inspires others to give their best. She works tirelessly in any school or community event and brings with her a genuine and sincere belief in the good of humanity.

“Her school says Mamaeroa espouses the richness of a bi-cultural worldview and is eager to accept the challenge of making a difference in her community. She is committed to the continued development of the Rotorua community and has every intention in the future of contributing to her community which she believes has given her a strong sense of identity,” says Mr Ikin,.

Please find citations of all finalists attached.

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Youth Community Spirit Award finalist

The first finalist for the Award is Kelsey Horne from John Paul College.

Kelsey is an impressive young lady who truly knows the value of community spirit. As Deputy Head Leader at John Paul College this year she is able to lead by example – and boy does she ever!

At her school she is part of the John Paul College Interact Club fundraising for needy people in the community, she is the coach of the winning junior girls water polo team, coach of the John Paul College Intermediate Water polo team and coach for the under 12’s representative water polo team. Kelsey is part of the Lasallian Youth gathering committee and the mentoring committee. She is involved in many cultural activities including Stage Challenge, school productions, gaining her grade eight for Speech and Drama and was the winner of the Chanel shield for impromptu speaking.

But her reach doesn’t stop there; she spreads her love out into the community as a Senior Leader at the Lakes Ranch Children’s Camp, where she volunteers for one week of every school holidays. She says she finds great satisfaction in seeing children’s personal growth and encouraging them to achieve their goals. She volunteers for Plunket, Red Cross and Daffodil days and was a member of the John Paul College Relay for Life team. She also is a referee for Rotorua Flippa Ball.

Your school says you are very outgoing and hardworking. You are able to push people through encouragement until they gain success. They say you give your all to whatever you undertake and receive respect and hard work from those around you. You are focused on school but also the wider community, spending many hours coaching and fundraising for others.

Well done Kelsey – you must be one incredibly busy lady!


Youth Community Spirit Award finalist

Our second finalist is Jessica Drysdale from Reporoa College.

Jessica contributes to every facet of school life whether it be in her role as Deputy Head Girl, where she provides excellent leadership and is an exemplary role model to younger students or in her role of establishing and driving the Young Lions Club at the college. The Lions Club have fundraised for St Johns Ambulance, the Rotorua SPCA, World Vision 40 Hour famine, the Reporoa College gymnastics team and shave for a cure – to name a few.

Jessica is also a committed member of the school’s Hillary Challenge Team and is working towards a Hillary/Duke of Edinburgh Award this year. She has also coordinated a fundraising event for the college ball and has represented the school at a number of speaking events.

Jessica is actively involved in the school’s ‘Respect’ programme which seeks to promote positive behaviour at school and is also a peer mediator.

In the community she has volunteered at Iron Man and also at the Outdoor Pursuits Centre.

Her school describes her as someone who has a love of learning and a high level of motivation, participating fully in the wider life of the college. She gives generously of her time not only to pursue her own ideas and goals but to support other students in achieving their aims. Jessica genuinely puts others before her own needs and cares; she is an articulate, intelligent and deeply caring young woman who thoroughly deserves to be recognised for her efforts.

Congratulations Jessica – we look forward to hearing about you in the future!

Youth Community Spirit Award finalist


Our third finalist tonight is Mamaeroa Merito from Rotorua Girls’ High School.

Mamaeroa is an all-rounder student who works tirelessly on a range of activities both at school and in her community. To begin with Mamaeroa is a year 13 prefect, a member of the Executive committee for Kahui Rangatahi – the Maori student council. She is involved in the school debating team, stage challenge, wearable arts and the school Kapa Haka group that has won two regional competitions and placed second nationally.

Mamaeroa has a strong sense of community which is exemplified in her participation in a suicide prevention strategy for youth. She has worked with Kia Piki Te Ora which is a suicide prevention organisation that is committed to raising awareness around the issues related to suicide. Mamaeroa has designed a suicide prevention tool for youth to promote well-being and health. The idea of a wristband, initiated by Mamaeroa, was launched at a National Suicide Prevention Conference and in January this year a group of Papakura High School students met with Mamaeroa to discuss its implementation in their own school. She is also an active member of the Ngati Pikiao tribe and participates in a wide range of activities.

Her school describes her as someone who consistently motivates and inspires others to give their best. She works tirelessly in any school or community event and brings with her a genuine and sincere belief in the good of humanity. Mamaeroa espouses the richness of a bi-cultural worldview and is eager to accept the challenge of making a difference in her community. She is committed to the continued development of the Rotorua community and has every intention in the future of contributing to her community which she believes has given her a strong sense of identity.

Awesome work – well done!


Youth Community Spirit Award finalist


Our fourth finalist is Adam Bow from Rotorua Boys’ High School.

Adam is a dedicated student with a passion for the performing arts and sport. He has represented the school at badminton, water polo and soccer. He has been in many school productions as well as representing the school in other musical performances such as the Super 8 Schools competition and the Rockquest. He is in the school band and orchestra and has played at different cultural festivals in the community.

Adam is one of the 12 prefects at Rotorua Boys’ High school and also the leader of Drake House. On top of all this Adam excels at school academically and was the recipient of the school’s exclusive Scholars Blazers Award.

Your school says you are well respected by all students and staff; you have a quiet, positive and mature approach. You are a delight to teach and an impressive ambassador for your school and the people you represent.

Well done Adam – you are a strong leader and have a bright future!

Youth Community Spirit Award finalist


Our fifth and final finalist is Rarua Tahuriorangi from Rotorua Lakes High School.

Rarua gives a lot of time to her school and community through her talents. She has been involved in the school Kapa Haka group for all her schooling years and as a leader for the last four years. This has seen her participating in the national Kapa Haka competition – where they took out the national title.

She is a school prefect, and a mentor for junior students. Rarua has participated in the World of Music, Arts and Dance Festival, the Festival of Pacific Arts and has performed in stage challenge. She has represented her school in netball, swimming, athletics and inter-house sports.

In the community Rarua was involved in a concert which raised over $100,000 for the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal and also performed in the Rugby World Cup opening ceremony.

Your school has recognised you as someone who leads from behind, quietly encouraging others using your skills. They say you have a humility, commitment and positive influence which make you a great ambassador.

We think you do a great job of demonstrating youth community spirit – well done!


ENDS

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