Parata lauds young achievers
‘‘ Porirua is a city that is punching above its weight,’’ Education Minister Hekia Parata said when presenting the 2014 winners of the Porirua Youth Awards to a packed audience at Pataka on September 11.
She said the awards were a testament to the young talent in the city.
Parata was instrumental in setting up the awards in 2010 with support from Partners Porirua, the Porirua Foundation, Telecom and New Zealand Post, and she continues as the awards patron.
Porirua company Whittakers has committed to helping fund the awards into the future.
Of 37 student nominees in art and culture, education, environment or community work, and sport, eight were highly commended and three won excellence awards.
Winning students earned cash prizes of up to $1500. Award recipients: Excellence. Liam Elphick, 17, year 13 at Aotea College. For his efforts in highland dancing and his academic excellence.
Nopera Dennis-McCarthy, 17, head boy at Samuel Marsden Collegiate, Whitby. For academic achievements and leadership roles.
J’Adoube Elkington, 17, deputy head boy at Aotea College. For his efforts as a surf life guard and his academic achievements. Highly commended. Parerima Wiki- Cummings, 14, year 10 at Tawa College. A junior sports award.
Rapata Wiki- Cummings, 14, year 10 at Tawa College. For his sports achievements.
Bridget Hawthorne, 17, year 13 at Aotea College. For her underwater hockey and academic achievements.
Ben Walsh, 17, year 13 at Tawa College. Sports award for his achievements in swimming, while balancing his academic studies.
Mua Josephine Luatua Solofa, 17, year 13 at Aotea College. For her educational achievements and leadership roles.
Chantha Pai, 17, a year 13 student at Aotea College. For his academic achievements and leadership.
Angus Allen, 17, head boy at Kapiti College. For his educational achievements and leadership roles.
Kapeteni Polutea, 18, head boy at Porirua College. For his educational achievements and leadership roles.
Awards line-up: Top, from left: Education Minister Hekia Parata, Rapata Wiki-Cummings, Ben Walsh, Kapeteni Polutea, Angus Allen, Liam Elphick, J’Adoube Elkington, Nopera Dennis-McCarthy, Porirua mayor Nick Leggett. Bottom, from left: Parerima Wiki-Cummings, Chantha Pai, Bridget Hawthorne, Mua Josephine Luatua Solofa.