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BOP youth receive excellence awards

Sam Wright and Jade Raumati. Image: supplied.

Two of the Bay of Plenty’s most inspiring young Kiwis were recognised for their outstanding leadership and becoming role models for children, at the Graeme Dingle Foundation 2019 Excellence Awards.

Jade Raumati and Sam Wright received the Kiwi Can – Outstanding Team Leader Award for making a positive change in their schools, their students and community, through their leadership of the Kiwi Can programme.

Kiwi Can is a life skills and values programme for Year 1 to 8 students that is run in over 100 primary and intermediate schools around New Zealand. The programme promotes a ‘can-do’ attitude and encourages children to take responsibility for their actions.

Jan Buist, of the BOP Graeme Dingle Foundation, praises Jade and Sam’s achievements.

“Starting in January this year, as a Kiwi Can Leader in the Bay of Plenty; Jade Raumati has quickly become a standout. Her warmth, diligence, attention to detail, positivity and 'can do' approach have made her popular with her team and students alike. With two degrees in business management and social work, and working towards fluency in Te Reo Māori; Jade brings real expertise to the role.

“Sam Wright is also new to the Kiwi Can Leader's role in the Bay of Plenty, this year. He has quickly attracted attention to his work because of his fun behaviour management techniques, and lively attention getters; which together serve to keep students focused and interested in what he is teaching.

“Jade and Sam complement each other's styles very well in the classroom, working well as a team. We are very proud of their achievements.”

Jade and Sam received their award on an evening which celebrated the over 27,000 students, their mentors, leaders and volunteers across the country who have been involved in the foundation’s various youth development programmes including Kiwi Can, Stars, Career Navigator, Project K, Kiwi Tahi and MYND, over the last 12 months.

It also celebrated the incredible achievements of these amazing young people, many of whom have conquered immense challenges to chart a positive course through life.

The foundation’s co-founder Sir Graeme Dingle, mountaineer and outdoor education pioneer, says the awards perfectly showcase what the foundation lives and breathes – transforming young lives forever.

“The ethos of our foundation is that we want all young New Zealanders to have a life full of possibilities so they can achieve their dreams and make the most of their unique talents. We want to help them build foundations for success.

“The awards are an amazing opportunity to celebrate this country’s future - our children and our young people. It provides a valuable platform for them to recognise their own strengths and muster, from within, the conviction to overcome challenges, both big and small. It is also a wonderful reminder of the incredible work that our mentors and volunteers deliver, day in and day out, for children and young people throughout the country.

“Each year, these kids show courage, determination and resilience. It gives me a tremendous sense of joy to be able to recognise and acknowledge each and every one of our winners, who we are all so exceptionally proud of.”

The annual Excellence Awards began as the Project K Outstanding Student Award. They were first hosted by Governor General, Dame Sylvia Cartwright, 19 years ago. The awards provide an opportunity to honour and celebrate outstanding young New Zealanders across all of the foundation’s programmes throughout New Zealand.

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