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Taiohi-Taiao/Youth Jam 2015

Youth Jam / Taiohi-Taiao is our free annual youth event for Bay of Plenty secondary students which aims to foster environmental awareness, youth leadership and participation. This year, the focus for the event was “Freshwater from Source to Sea”. 61 secondary students from nine schools joined us in May to explore what freshwater means to them.

Staying at Aongatete Lodge, the Tauranga Harbour provided great case studies for students to learn about freshwater management. Students took part in field trips at the top, middle and bottom of the catchment, and met a variety of people who live and work in the catchment.

  Testing water quality in the Kopurererua Stream  Identifying water catchments at Youth Jam

Students' vision for water

Students were asked what they wanted to see for the future of freshwater. From their brainstorm, they came up with keywords to fit into a vision statement:

"We want our water and everything in it to be clean and healthy and accessible for those who need it, and for our next generation, with healthy biodiversity and riparian planted waterways."

Poetry Anthology

Two time national slam poetry champion Te Kahu Rolleston worked with the students to produce and perform their own poetry. We have collated their poems inspired by the experiences at Youth Jam / Taiohi-Taiao in aresource to share the voice of Bay of Plenty youth and pass on the inspiration. Youth perspectives were collected during the event to feed in to both the Tauranga Harbour and the Freshwater Futures Programmes.

Taiohi Taiao Youth Jam 2015 Poetry (3MB, PDF)

Youth Jam 21 May 2015 11Meet the People of Tauranga Harbour catchment

We wanted students to hear from a wide range of stakeholders connected to fresh water in Tauranga Harbour.

Local people from the business, iwi, recreation and conservation sectors were interviewed  on freshwater issues and management in the Te Awanui Tauranga Harbour catchment. Interviewees include Al Fleming (Forest and Bird), Baden Prentice (New Zealand Deerstalkers Association), Charlie Tawhiao (Tangata Whenua),  Chris Battershill (University of Waikato);  Nicola Foran (Trustpower),  Rick Powdrell (Federated Farmers), Ross Bawden (Kiwi Fruit Growers) and  Tania Bui (Tourism industry).

Each of the speakers were asked the same questions:

  • Why is water and catchment management important to the job that you do/your organisation?
  • From your organisation or industry’s perspective what are the big issues for water and catchment management right now and in the long term?
  • What do you think needs to happen to address these issues?

 The video is available through the Bay of Plenty Regional Council You Tube channel.

 What's next?

The event has inspired these young people to be more conscious of their waterways and what actions they can take. Here are just a few examples of what schools would like to achieve following Youth Jam:

  • Otumoetai College: Start an Enviro-group to look at local projects (They’ve got planting days planned in August to help protect waterways that feed into the Matua Salt Marsh)
  • Pāpāmoa College: Riparian plant the local drain that runs near school. (They’ve already borrowed our water monitoring kits to test the water themselves)
  • Edgecumbe College
    Join the Rangitāiki WMA Community Group (Applications are open now)

Students removing mangrove seedlings in the Tauranga Harbour  Poet Te Kahu Rolleston sharing slam poetry