Stu­dents spend night on is­land

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - STAFF RE­PORTER

Six lucky stu­dents had an overnight ad­ven­ture on Kapiti Is­land last week­end to cel­e­brate their work car­ing for Porirua Har­bour and the streams feed­ing into it.

The stu­dents have been se­lected as part of the an­nual Kaiti­aki ki a Kapiti (Kaiti­aki to Kapiti) trip run by Healthy Har­bours Porirua, with fund­ing from Greater Welling­ton Re­gional Coun­cil and sup­port from Ngati Toa and the De­part­ment of Con­ser­va­tion.

Each year Healthy Har­bours take a small group of stu­dents who have shown ex­cep­tional lead­er­ship and com­mit­ment to their en­vi­ron­ment on the two-day ex­pe­ri­ence.

While there, the stu­dents snorkelled in Welling­ton’s old­est ma­rine re­serve, went night-time kiwi spot­ting, and learnt about the rich his­tory of the is­land and the en­dan­gered species that in­habit it.

Az­izah Isaako, from St Theresa’s School in Plim­mer­ton, was thrilled at the op­por­tu­nity.

‘‘Get­ting to go to Kapiti Is­land is one of my dreams be­cause it’s an ex­pe­ri­ence I haven’t had be­fore,’’ he said.

Az­izah said the word kaiti­aki means guardians, and he and the other stu­dents have done this work be­cause ‘‘we are the kaiti­aki of the streams, oceans, rivers and our en­vi­ron­ment. We are try­ing to make a dif­fer­ence’’.

Stu­dents were se­lected at a pre­sen­ta­tion fo­rum ear­lier this month where they were given the op­por­tu­nity to meet like-minded peers and share the sto­ries of their projects with each other.

Projects have ranged from stream clean-ups, ri­par­ian plant­ing, freshwater mon­i­tor­ing and weed erad­i­ca­tion.

The win­ning stu­dents then pre­sented their wor to the public on Novem­ber 19 at the Porirua Har­bour Trust’s Ti­ak­ina Nga Taonga art ex­hi­bi­tion.

Zoe Studd, who man­ages the Healthy Har­bours pro­gramme said: ’’This year’s pre­sen­ta­tions from the stu­dents re­ally blew us away. It is amaz­ing to see the ded­i­ca­tion and pas­sion for their projects.’’

Studd said the trip is de­signed to cel­e­brate the stu­dents’ ef­forts, show them what is pos­si­ble in their own back­yard, and fur­ther em­power them to take ac­tion for the Porirua Har­bour catch­ment.

This year’s stu­dents are Jamima Shubart and Maia La­Pointe from Ti­tahi Bay North School, Rik­i­hana Love and Hamiora Te Kani from Mana Col­lege, and Bray­den Al­gar, and Az­izah Isaako from St Theresa’s School.

For more in­for­ma­tion on Healthy Har­bours Porirua head to Moun­tain­sToSeaWelling­ton.org, where you can also fol­low the stu­dents’ projects.

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