8 December 2016
PRESS RELEASE: SWY NZ Alumni Association Incorporated
Twelve of New Zealand’s finest youth leaders assembled for the first time over the weekend of 26/27 November as they prepare to embark on the journey of a lifetime.
The 29th Ship for World Youth Leaders programme will bring present and future world leaders together from eleven countries for seven weeks in January 2017.
Operated by the Japanese Cabinet Office, countries participating this year are Japan, Costa Rica, Brazil, India, New Zealand, Tonga, Kenya, Fiji, Ukraine, Canada and Egypt. This year the ship will make ports of call in New Zealand and Fiji.
The programme aims to strengthen intercontinental relationships, international cooperation and to foster dialogue about global issues from the perspective of the next generation inheriting the earth. The team of young kiwis met at Papatuanuku Kokiri Marae in Mangere to bond and begin preparing for the programme. They set delegation values of Aroha, Respect, Tautoko (support) and Manaakitanga (duty of care) and made progress putting together their national presentation, an exercise they are given to showcase New Zealand to the other participating countries.
Delegation national leader Jay Rerekura of Whanganui is project manager at Nga Tai O Te Awa by day and youth mentor by night, supporting young people find opportunities in recreation, education and employment across the Manawatu-Whanganui region. Jay says that the programme is incredibly significant for both New Zealand and for the world. “Taking up the role of leading this inspiring group of young leaders is incredibly humbing. SWY has left such a legacy in youth development globally and the impact for participants is indescribable. It has cemented the leadership reputation of New Zealand on the world stage and that is why we are invited to participate so often”.
The programme is largely funded by the Japanese government, however, the delegation faces a significant fundraising challenge to cover expenses of over $3,000 associated with preparation including national uniforms, travel in Aotearoa, and official gifts. The group is also looking for corporate partnerships and sponsorship of products from New Zealand organisations that are interested in showcasing their goods in international markets.
To support the New Zealand delegation on their journey you can make a donation or offer of sponsorship visit https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/aotearoaswy29
For more information about the programme and this year’s delegates visit
Media contact: Garreth Stevens
027 442 4022