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Laura’s love spreads out into the community through her work as a youth group leader at church, a Sunday School teacher and helper at the St Luke’s Parish Fair. She dedicates a lot of energy to these roles and generously gives of her time amongst her busy schedule.

The TrustPower Youth Community Spirit Award recognises secondary school students’ service to school and community. The Award will be presented at an event on Monday 24 June at Blue Baths. 

To be considered for the TrustPower Youth Community Spirit Award students had to have given service to school or community projects, treated others with care and respect and been a good ambassador for their school and the region. 

Local high schools were asked to recommend one student to be considered for the Award. The other five finalists for the award were Kaitlin Cotton from Rotorua Girls’ High School, Nicole Stevenson from John Paul College, Yeseul Park from Rotorua Lakes High School, Kerry Power from Reporoa College and Shaun Geerlings-Parker from Rotorua Boys’ High School. 

In partnership with this award, Waiariki Institute will present a special award to Yeseul Pak who has been chosen as the winner of the Waiariki Institute Award for excelling though perseverance and active community involvement. 

For winning the TrustPower Rotorua Youth Community Spirit Award Laura received a framed certificate and $500 prize money, with $250 going to her personally and $250 given to a community group or organisation of Laura’s choice, which will be announced at tonight’s Awards. Yeseul also received a framed certificate and $500 prize money for winning the Waiariki Institute Award, with $250 going to her personally and $250 given to a community group or organisation of Yeseul’s choice – which again will be presented at tonight’s Awards. 

Another special commendation will also be presented tonight by MP Todd McClay to Kerry Power from Reporoa College. Kerry will be treated to a day out with MP Todd McClay in Wellington to see all the action! 

Laura Jackson is an all-round student who works tirelessly on a range of activities both at school and in her community. To begin with Laura is head girl at Western Heights this year, is the house captain of Waiporoporo House, is a representative on the Student Council and president of the Western Heights Interact Club. This presidency role means Laura plays an integral part in organising fundraising events for students to participate in. 

Laura coaches the Western Heights Junior Netball Team which is a huge commitment. She also organised a team for the Relay for Life which included holding bake sales to raise money for the Cancer Society. 

Laura’s love spreads out into the community through her work as a youth group leader at church, a Sunday School teacher and helper at the St Luke’s Parish Fair. She dedicates a lot of energy to these roles and generously gives of her time amongst her busy schedule. 

Teresa Partridge, TrustPower Community Relations Representative, says Laura gives so much to her community. She has also been a volunteer at the St Francis Whanau Aroha Centre, an usher at the Rotorua Wearable Arts, helped out with Plunket and World Vision fundraisers, volunteers at the Hospital Chapel and is a member of the Kaharoa Community Association. In 2011 and 2012 Laura organised and helped with a children’s Christmas holiday program. 

“Laura makes a significant contribution to the Rotorua community through her school, church and sport, but also in her closer community of Kaharoa. Laura is an outstanding leader, a very civic minded woman of the highest integrity,” says Mrs Partridge. 

Yeseul Park is the kind of student who throws herself into all school activities, volunteering her time and energy to help others. 

At school she is a member of the student forum, the SADD Committee, she is a peer support leader and is involved in different sports such as hockey, soccer, orienteering and played for the Bay of Plenty Secondary Schools Senior Girls Volleyball team last year. Each year at high school Yeseul has participated in stage challenge productions. She is a high achiever and gives her all in each area that she participates in Yeseul is the House Captain of Tikitapu House at Rotorua Lakes High School and also has the responsibility of school prefect this year. 

Since last year Yeseul has been working towards the Duke of Edinburgh Award, volunteering her time at Rotorua Redwoods Retirement home working with elderly residents. Yeseul believes in the power of integrating and giving back to a community and works voluntarily within the Rotorua Korean community helping newly arrived Korean migrants adapt to living in New Zealand and to learn English. 

Deputy Chief Executive of Waiariki Institute, Keith Ikin says Yeseul arrived in New Zealand as a five year old, with no English language, but has overcome these obstacles and has let nothing stand in her way of living a full life and giving back to her school and community. 

“Yeseul “walks the talk” and throw herself into school life and carry peers with her. Her positive attitude has set her on a good path for her future,” says Mr Ikin. 

Kerry Power is Deputy Head Boy at Reporoa College, is a member of the Student Leadership group, captain of the first 15 rugby team and coaches the junior rugby team. He is also a member of the young Lions club helping to organise different fundraising activities at school. 

Kerry is proud of his school and works hard to keep it clean helping to paint benches and pool fences in the weekend and is also part of the working group to improve the gardens at the college. 

Rotorua MP Todd McClay says Kerry has a strong sense of community and was part of the project cleaning up the Waikite Valley Domain, helping to renovate the domains toilets and local scouts den and was subsequently part of the founding scout troop.

“Kerry is well respected by staff and students for his attitude and is a young man with integrity, a great role model in both his sporting and academic achievements and also with his volunteering efforts,” says Mr McClay. 

For more information, photos or to arrange an interview with Laura, Yeseul or Kerry please contact:

MEDIA ENQUIRIES

Teresa Partridge

Community Relations Representative

Phone

(07) 572 9349