Over 80 young people living in small, offshore communities will get to participate in leadership and mentoring opportunities as part of the latest funding allocated under the Small Communities Youth Grant Fund, Youth Minister Nikki Kaye announced today.

“A total of $25,000 will be allocated to initiatives supporting young people on Waiheke, Great Barrier, Matakana, Rangiwaea and Stewart Islands,” says Ms Kaye.

“Young people living in these communities generally have a more limited range of opportunities than their peers on the mainland, because they don’t have access to the same range of clubs, facilities and people such as coaches and mentors.

“This fund is about ensuring that young people get opportunities to grow and develop new skills and confidence, no matter where they live.

“A youth development opportunity can inspire young people to pursue a new direction or turn their life around, and I truly believe that tomorrow’s leaders are just as likely to come from Okiwi on Great Barrier Island, or Halfmoon Bay on Stewart Island, as they are from Auckland city.”

The initiatives that will be funded include a career expo, a kaupapa Maori immersion experience and a water and boat safety education programme.

“Through these opportunities, participants will get the chance to develop their self-confidence, leadership and decision-making skills, while contributing positively to their communities at the same time,” says Ms Kaye.

The recipients are:

Waiheke Youth Centre - $5,000 to support up to 30 young people to access and deliver workshops around safe sexuality and relationships, including mentoring sessions for young males who can benefit from a positive male influence Nga Tama Toa O Te Motu, Waiheke Island - $5,000 to provide mentoring for up to 10 young people to support them to develop leadership skills through a marae-based kaupapa Maori immersion experience Aotea Family Support Group, Great Barrier Island - $5,000 to support up to ten young people to develop and run a career expo for secondary school students and their parents and guardians Te Awanui Hauora Trust, Matakana and Rangiwaea Islands - $5,000 to support up to 30 young people to receive training in governance, project development and implementation of a youth-led working group, aimed at ensuring the youth voice is heard in their communities Halfmoon Bay School, Stewart Island - $5,000 to support three young people to undertake a Day Skippers course to develop their water safety knowledge and experience, then mentor younger students about water and boat safety.

“In March I announced an increase to the total funding available under the Small Communities Youth Grant Fund, from $90,000 to $150,000 over three years,” says Ms Kaye.

“This is the second round of funding allocated since then, so it’s pleasing to see more opportunities being created for young people living beyond our two main islands.”

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