Level 1/204 Willis st, Te Aro, Wellington, Wellington, 6011


Tangihaere Gardiner


Whaiarataki Rangatahi o Aotearoa – National Youth Leadership Forum

The purpose of this is event is to share collective knowledge about representation, to bring young people together to talk about their experience with representation, sitting on various committees and school boards as well as other opportunities around leadership within secondary schools. We want to show young people what our mahi is and what we do to effect change in Aotearoa, through voting, civil education, mentoring opportunities and representation.

We plan on hosting 4 events running at the same time online and in person, over 2 days across the country so people from all around Aotearoa can attend and we can connect them via Teams online. These in-person events will be hosted in Dunedin at the University of Otago, Wellington at Victoria University of Wellington, Hamilton at the University of Waikato, and Auckland at the Auckland University of Technology.

The event is occurring in partnership between the New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations, National Disabled Students’ Association, New Zealand International Students’ Association, and the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand, with support from the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, Student Job Search, the YMCA, the Education Team at Parliamentary Service, and the Organising Bureau of European School Students’ Unions.

We hope to share the whakapapa of students in leadership in Aotearoa and across the world in 2 days of workshops, and help them understand where they sit within this whakapapa. We are hoping to connect the students with international panelists and student reps from around the world to hear korero from them about their mahi and how we can stay connected in any future mahi the students hope to pursuit. We are specifically hoping to focus on students and young people who are in low-decile schools and from less affluent communities, including South Auckland, West Auckland, and rural areas in the South Island in Otago.

Our goal is to provide a space where young people can see themselves represented in national democratic structures and understand how they can amplify their own voices and the voices of the people around them. We especially want to see representation for less advantaged communities, to inspire youth leadership among less represented communities include Maori, Pasifika, disabled, minority, refugee, migrant and other low-socioeconomic student bodies. We want to provide a space for co-designing networking structures that give young people a chance to speak directly to organisations they will come across over their journey into further education. We will be running a workshop about the code of pastoral care and what this means for them, a workshop about Te Pukenga and how their “Learner at the center” model works, the different Wananga and how they support young people going into higher education from a Maori perspective. We will be encouraging the young people involved to have korero with the people involved in this mahi and how they can connect with people who can advocate for them if they have a challenging experience with the transition to tertiary education. We will be running these events with the support of local student associations and different community groups around Aotearoa. We will also invite several civil society organisations to speak, to share civic values with young people and the pathways towards leadership in their community and beyond.

This will hopefully be the first of many events we host of this type. We hope to gift this event to the young people who pass through our doors as the leaders of tomorrow.

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