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A funding boost to the Small Communities Youth Grant Fund means more young people living in offshore communities will benefit from youth development opportunities, including leadership programmes, mentoring and volunteering, Youth Minister Nikki Kaye announced today.

“This fund is for young people living in places such as Matakana, Great Barrier, Waiheke, Stewart and the Chatham Islands,” says Ms Kaye.

“The total funding available under the fund will increase to $150,000 over three years, up from $90,000 currently.

“Young people living in our offshore communities generally have a much more limited range of opportunities than their peers living on the mainland.

“For example, there simply may not be the same breadth of facilities, such as sports fields, or access to clubs and people like coaches and mentors.

“I’m determined to ensure that we create opportunities for young people living in these communities, so they can grow their skills and qualities such as self-confidence, leadership and decision-making, whilst contributing positively to their communities at the same time.

“We’ve previously supported young people from Stewart Island, the Chatham Islands and Great Barrier Island to take part in initiatives such as sporting opportunities and educational trips to the mainland.

“Today I’m pleased to announce the successful initiatives under the first round of funding for 2017.”

The recipients are:

Te Awanui Hauora, Matakana Island ($5,000 to support 20 young people to participate in leadership opportunities aimed at co-designing community services and activities on the island) Aotea Family Support Group Charitable Trust, Great Barrier Island ($5,000 to support 48 young people to participate in leadership and mentoring opportunities based on an intergenerational event involving island and mainland communities) Waiheke Youth Voice, Waiheke Island ($5000 to support ten young people to provide leadership and mentoring, drawing on the arts and creativity, for a further 20 young people) Kaitoki School, Great Barrier Island and Halfmoon Bay School, Stewart Island ($5000 to support 20 young people to help plan and deliver activities as part of a rural network event involving both mainland and offshore schools).

“With the right opportunities, tomorrow’s leaders and achievers are just as likely to come from our offshore communities as our bigger towns and cities,” says Ms Kaye.

“This funding will support almost 100 young people to take part in opportunities that will help put them on a path to a successful future.”

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