Stu­dents win award

Cy­ber­bul­ly­ing ini­tia­tive takes top prize

Central Otago Mirror - - CENTRAL NEWS -

A group of Cen­tral Otago youth tack­ling cy­ber­bul­ly­ing has won the Supreme Award at the 2014 Trust­power Cen­tral Otago District Com­mu­nity Awards.

The awards were an­nounced last night at a func­tion held at the Or­chard Gar­dens.

For win­ning the Supreme Award, REAP re­ceived a framed cer­tifi­cate, tro­phy and $1500.

REAP now has the op­por­tu­nity to rep­re­sent the district at the 2014 Trust­power Na­tional Com­mu­nity Awards, which are be­ing held in Welling­ton in March 2015.

In to­tal, Trust­power has given away more than $5000 to var­i­ous com­mu­nity groups at the cer­e­mony.

Trust­power Com­mu­nity Re­la­tions Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Emily Beaton said REAP was a group of stu­dent vol­un­teers who ‘‘made it their mis­sion to show their peers, par­ents and com­mu­nity that on­line be­hav­iour is a part of real life’’.

‘‘These vol­un­teers are bring­ing cy­ber bul­ly­ing un­der the spot­light and en­cour­ag­ing people to think and talk about be­ing pos­i­tive on­line. By shar­ing in­for­ma­tion in a range of ways they are en­sur­ing that it is ac­ces­si­ble to ev­ery­one.’’

The vol­un­teers were mak­ing a huge dif­fer­ence with their em­pow­er­ing mes­sage and peer ed­u­ca­tion, Beaton said.

‘‘They should be ex­tremely proud of them­selves for the work they have done so far.’’

The com­pe­ti­tion for this year’s awards was solid with 29 groups en­tered, she said.

Other win­ners in­cluded: ◗ Her­itage and En­vi­ron­ment: Alexan­dra Men’s Shed (win­ner); Roxburgh Group Te­viot Prospects (run­ner-up); Cen­tral Sto­ries Mu­seum and Art Gallery (com­men­da­tion). ◗ Health and Well­be­ing: Cen­tral Otago St John Health Shut­tle (win­ner); Cromwell Com­mu­nity Wel­fare Trust (run­ner-up). ◗ Art and Cul­ture: LX Ukes (win­ner); Clyde Theatre Group (run­ner-up) ◗ Sport and Leisure: Icein­line Cen­tral In­cor­po­rated (win­ner); Alexan­dra Pe­tanque Club (run­ner-up) ◗ Ed­u­ca­tion and Child/Youth De­vel­op­ment: Alexan­dra Child­care Cen­tre (win­ner); Alexan­dra Par­ents Cen­tre (run­ner-up); Alexan­dra Youth Fo­rum (com­men­da­tion); Alexan­dra Branch So­ci­ety of Ge­neal­o­gists (com­men­da­tion). ◗ Supreme Win­ner: REAP— Sticks and Stones Cy­ber­bul­ly­ing Project. ◗ Youth Spirit: Si­mon Neil­son, Man­iototo Area School (win­ner); Jacinda Mor­ton, Cromwell Col­lege (run­ner-up); Mac­Cauley Har­ris, Dun­stan High School (fi­nal­ist) and Erina Jef­fery, Roxburgh Area School (fi­nal­ist).

Team­work: Sticks ’n Stones School rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Dun­stan, Cromwell Col­lege, Man­iototo Area School, Roxburgh Area School and Mt As­pir­ing Col­lege are pro­mot­ing pos­i­tive on­line mes­sages to the com­mu­nity.

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