Re-established Youth Council appointed

Back row: Luke, left, Laila, Dean, Finley, David and Puhi. Front row: India May, left, Gargi, Mayor Tania Tapsell, Tulsi, Anusha and Sophia.

Eleven young locals have been selected to serve our community on the 2024 Rotorua Youth Council.

A total of 37 individuals applied and Mayor Tania Tapsell, Councillor Fisher Wang, and representatives from the Youth Council reference group, carefully reviewed all applications before selecting the 11 successful candidates.

The Rotorua Youth Council programme is about personal development, leadership and community. The Youth Councillors will learn about, and have input into, how decisions are made and how Council serves the community.

Newly appointed Rotorua Youth Councillor India May Heron says she applied because she believes it’s important for youth to have input in our community’s future.

“I’m passionate about creating sustainable outcomes for our future generations and I’m hoping I can share my knowledge and experiences whilst learning alongside some incredible young leaders.”

On November 22, 2023, Council voted in favour of re-establishing a Youth Council, which previously ran for 17 years.

A six week recruitment campaign sought individuals aged between 15 and 20 who were interested in leadership development, serving the community, and who could commit to participating in monthly meetings.

Rotorua Mayor Tania Tapsell, who was previously a youth councillor, says the Youth Council provides the opportunity to support future community leaders and for young people to have more of a voice in decisions that impact their future.

“It’s unfortunate this opportunity hasn’t been available for the past six years so we’re really excited to be re-establishing the Youth Council and supporting the next generation of leaders.

“We thank everyone who took the time to apply. It was very inspiring going through the applications and seeing the contribution that our youth have already been making to our community. We look forward to supporting our new youth councillors as they continue to grow their leadership skills and contribute to a better Rotorua, now and into the future.”

The selected candidates will meet monthly, with the first meeting on Monday, February 26. Recruitment for the 2025 Rotorua Youth Councillors will begin in late 2024.

Rotorua Youth Councillor David Barsdell says he joined to represent and add power to the rangatahi voice at decision making tables.

“We’re in a fast changing world which needs our collective effort - a process without boundaries to find the best solutions to ensure a positive outcome for us all. Rotorua is my home, a place I love and will put up the good fight for! Mauri ora ki a tatou!”

Rotorua 2024 Youth Councillors:

  • Anusha Sharma
  • David Barsdell
  • Dean Richardson
  • Finley English
  • Gargi Vaidya
  • India May Heron
  • Laila Tai
  • Luke Westrupp
  • Puhi Ropitini
  • Sophia Choi
  • Tulsi Goswami

You may also like....


Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to make a comment.