Youth potential celebrated in Prime Minister's Youth Programme

By Wepiha Te Kanawa

100 youth from around the country were selected to take part in the Prime Minister's Youth Programme, an initiative that focuses on exploring youth potential.

This year, rugby super star Tyla Nathan-Wong shared her experiences with a group of young women over a three-course meal.

While the emerging leaders arrived as strangers, they are now like family.

An orator's weapon is his words, but the food shared by this group of strong young women is healthy food.

Jackie Cherrington of the Turn Your Life Around Youth Development Trust (TYLA) says, “We came together and the young women didn’t know each other, today is Tuesday and you know like you say kai brings us together, kai shares kōrero today we are almost close like a whānau.”

The participants of the Prime Minister’s Youth Programme come from all walks of life with their own stories.

Zahia Zambucka has been humbled by the experience, she says, “It's such a blessing to have this experience, wouldn't have expected to actually be able to do this and it's all paid for, it's really good. I had an awesome day I would do this again any day.”

They all prepared a three course meal at AUT, while rubbing shoulders with New Zealand rugby super star Tyla Nathan-Wong.

Tyla Nathan-Wong says, “Showing the girls what hard work and determination can really take you in the end and taking all the opportunities you can, and what you get given, and really working hard to your goals and your dreams because everyone starts with a dream and at the end of the day it’s up to, if you really strive for it and come up with the goal in the end.”

Jackie Cherrington says, “We have young women interested in becoming lawyers, so what we can provide is opportunities.”