Kid power released
Community projects designed and run by kids could be springing up all over Porirua under a new initiative called the Kids’ Partnership Programme.
Run by Partners Porirua and funded by Porirua City Council, the programme is aimed at giving children and young people a chance to get involved in their community.
Supported by schools, children will identify projects which benefit the community, such as making over a public space or coming up with fun activities for youth, and then working with council and others in the community, design and carry it out.
‘‘It’s got a start and a stop but we are not focusing on the end, we’re focusing on the learning and the journey,’’ Partners Porirua business education facilitator Jane Hocking told city councillors last Thursday.
Civic participation was a subject teachers were keen to teach children about but it was not taught at school – so a hands-on project was a good way to instil the values, she said.
Porirua mayor Nick Leggett said it was a positive way to get children and young people involved in the village planning process.
‘This is about the next step in opening up our village programme and saying actually, if a kid says ‘ can you get me a new skateboard park in Whitby’, we can say, no, first you tell us how to go about it,’’ Leggett said.
‘‘It’s sensible to ask them to create the solution to their desires.’’
Councillor Bronwyn Kropp said she did not support the proposal because it was not provided for in the Annual Plan – it will cost $10,000 initially – and would throw other priorities out of balance.
Funding will be reviewed after a year and could become part of the 2015-25 long term council plan, if successful.