Group to inspire Taihape teens
There’s some inspiration headed the way of Taihape’s teens next Monday at a youth festival to be held at Taihape Area School.
The first of its kind for Taihape, the festival is being facilitated by Rangitı¯kei District Council; with the aid of a grant from ‘‘community action on alcohol partnership’’ for youth activities through a health promotion agency.
The council’s southern youth development co-ordinator Gillian Bowler said the festival was about ‘‘inspiring and motivating’’ young people.
Previous such events had been held in the southern Rangitı¯kei but this year the decision was made to hold a festival in the northern part of the district, she said.
Bowler said it was hoped to attract up to 100 year 9 to 13 students from the three main high schools in the region plus ‘‘one or two’’ from further afield, and also home-schooled children.
There will be four main speakers at the festival, dubbed Mintas, as well as workshops and question and answer sessions.
‘‘We want to bring young people together in a cool sort of way,’’ said Bowler.
The quartet who are slated to inspire them include Taihape Rotarian Michael Andrews who, according to festival publicity, has a story to tell in his 24th year of being ‘‘drug, alcohol and smoke-free’’.
‘‘He loves his Taihape community and is currently on the O’Taihape Health Trust, Taihape Civil Defence Group, Neighbourhood Support Committee, a Youth Hutt volunteer and part-time tow truck driver.’’
Then there are two actors, Will Hall and Siobhan Marshall.
Hall has starred in Westside and TV series including Nothing Trivial, Shortland Street and Edmund Hillary’s story.
‘‘We want to bring young people together in a cool sort of way.’’ Rangit¯ıkei District Council's southern youth development co-ordinator Gillian Bowler
Marshall played Pascalle West in Outrageous Fortune and has also had roles in Shortland Street and kids’ show Amazing Extraordinary Friends.
She also starred in Sing like a Superstar and won the competition. Marshall appeared in Dancing with the Stars in 2015, placing third.
The fourth speaker is scheduled to be Aussie Rhys Williams, who won the Western Australian of the Year youth award in 2015.
At age 21, Williams started in local government as a district councillor for Mandurah and is running for mayor for the second time after missing out by two votes the first time.
Westside actor Will Hall will be in Taihape for the youth festival.