Youth Space climbs aboard Winter Fest
Complaints about nothing for young people to do in Palmerston North are being shrugged off at City Library’s Youth Space.
A Weetbix eat-off, a haka-off and coin rugby are among activities planned for young people by young people for the city’s Winter Festival on Thursday and Friday.
Co-Lab was set up to attract teens who wanted to be involved in planning and putting on public youth-oriented events.
Youth Space librarian Debbie Christian said the idea initially attracted 20 people, and settled on a core group of 14 teens who brainstormed events they wanted to see at the Winter Festival.
The young people get to put into action things they’ve learned about running public events on both days of the George St street carnival in a marquee outside Youth Space on Coleman Pl.
‘‘We’ve been taking them through the process of organising an event. The Winter Festival was an opportunity for them to become involved, and to work collaboratively. It was also a chance for them to tell us what they think works,’’ Christian said.
It meant becoming familiar with planning, permits, health and safety, and security, target age groups, equipment, logistics, food, and having enough people on the ground to co-ordinate and supervise the events.
‘‘It made them think through the finer details. It’s about communication and leadership. They have to get on with everybody.’’
The group had plenty of ideas, and after culling them down to ones that fitted the brief, liaised with festival director Karen Heaphy about the programme.
Liam Clayton, 17, of Te Kura Correspondence School is in charge of the Weetbix eat-off on Thursday between 6pm and 7.30pm, and the haka-off on Friday evening. He has organised $80 worth of Weetbix, courtesy of Sanitarium for the dry ‘bix crunching event.
‘‘It’s shown us how much planning that goes into things that you’ve got to think about. It’s going to be good, and will illustrate just how fun Palmy can be.’’
Sapphire Gordon, 15, from QEC is in charge of the lolly jar at another of the fun-fair style stalls.
‘‘I like how so many people are involved,’’ she said.
Putting on the events, Gordon said had made her think about things that she didn’t even know she had to think about.
‘‘It's shown us how much planning that goes into things that you've got to think about.’’ Liam Clayton, Co-Lab
Co-Lab teens at Youth Space from left, Kavish Desai, 15, Sapphire Gordon,15, and Liam Clayton, 17.