MYSTORY Youth Summit gives voice to Pacific young people

Press Release – South Seas Healthcare Trust – SSHT

Over 200 Pacific young people their families will be gathering at the Holiday Inn Hotel in Mangere this Friday and Saturday 21-22 June to take part in the MYSTORY Summit “Born to make an impact” and to discuss issues that matter most to them.

While attending the Summit, participants will have the opportunity to tell their heart-warming stories, and engage in interactive workshops including lively huddles, with a view to developing recommendations and solutions to put forward to key agencies to shape their policies and programmes for Pacific youth and young people.

SouthSeas Healthcare Trust CEO Silao Vaisola-Sefo says the Summit provides an important platform for young people to have their voices heard. “We are looking forward to the focus of the two-day summit and being able to listen to the stories of our young people, including voices from parents and key agencies involved.”

“We are grateful to have the opportunity to partner with the Ministry of Education who have a large role to play in advocating for the interests and wellbeing of children and young people with education as a big focus. This Summit enables us to hear what is important to young people, directly from them.”

“We are also looking forward to the level of collaboration with the Ministry of Youth Development and our supporting partnership with the Office of the Children’s Commissioner who have a strong focus on young people. They will have the opportunity to hear about the progress of MYSTORY initiative since we launched it two years ago and the work we have undertaken to date,” says Silao.

At the Auckland ASB Polyfest in March, MYSTORY collected youth voice from over 700 surveys. In these surveys, young people identified four of the top challenges they face as a Pasifika young person in New Zealand. Education was the top challenge followed by Employment, Wellbeing and Culture. Summit participants will discuss these issues and put forward a series of recommendations to the key agencies on these four key areas.

“The Summit is all about amplifying the voices of our young people and we value their voice for the future. It is about giving them space and creating an opportunity for them to discuss the issues they care about,” says Silao.

“This will be an exciting and an important Summit and we are deeply honoured to have passionate young people who are leading this event. We are also appreciative of our partners and key agencies working with us in supporting this event, to give young people a chance to share their personal stories in a safe place,” says Silao.

The Summit will kick off with a pōwhiri and an official welcoming by young people, followed by the opening speech delivered by SouthSeas Healthcare Chair Dr Teuila Percival, and include a keynote speech by the Children’s Commissioner Judge Andrew Becroft and the Ministry of Education. Also participating will be the Minister of Youth Development Hon Peeni Henare, University of Auckland Pro Vice Chancellor Pacific Toeolesulusulu Damon Salesa and Professor Marshall Ganz from Harvard University, Cambridge, Boston USA.

The Summit is hosted by SouthSeas Healthcare Trust, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, including support from the Office of the Children’s Commissioner and the Ministry of Youth Development.

For more information about the MYSTORY Summit visit our website

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