Young ad­vis­ers show mo­ti­va­tion

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By CAITLIN WAL­LACE

Stu­dents from all walks of life have joined forces to have their say on what goes on in the dis­trict.

A youth ad­vi­sory board was formed by the South Waikato Dis­trict Coun­cil this year.

So far the 22 stu­dents have all shared a common in­ter­est to boost youth de­vel­op­ment in the dis­trict.

Board mem­ber Jared Kennedy said it is early days but the pro­gramme has worked well.

‘‘It’s re­ally good to have a bit of a say to cre­ate op­por­tu­ni­ties that oth­er­wise wouldn’t be there,’’ he said.

At 22 he is one of the old­est mem­bers of the group which caters to stu­dents as young as 12.

Kennedy said his fel­low mem­bers have re­sponded well to the what he be­lieved is a rare op­por­tu­nity.

‘‘It’s good to see the en­thu­si­asm.’’

Group man­ager com­mu­nity Amanda Hema said the ini­tia­tive had been suc­cess­ful since it was es­tab­lished in July.

‘‘En­thu­si­asm and en­gage­ment lev­els are high; with a tremen­dous num­ber of ideas be­ing raised for con­sid­er­a­tion.’’

She said the coun­cil in­tro­duced a youth en­gage­ment panel to feed into the coun­cil plan­ning pro­cesses.

‘‘This was one of the key driv­ers for coun­cil staff to re-look at the struc­ture around the pre­vi­ous youth coun­cil, that had started to fail in the lat­ter years.’’

Stu­dents from across the dis­trict had signed up, with the ex­cep­tion of Ti­rau.

Hema said the board wel­comes more stu­dents and she hoped those from Ti­rau would put their hands up as well.

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