A huge thank you to all that attended the Youth Employment Success Celebration last night. We feel so privileged to have been able to share the evening with a room full of dedicated supporters of youth employment. It has been an incredible 12 months for Youth Employment Success, and with many exciting plans in the pipeline for the next 12 months, there was much to celebrate! We were lucky enough to have secured one of Dunedin’s best venues for the evening, the Otago Polytechnic Hub, with the most delicious catering by their fantastic functions team.
Congratulations to our incredible YES Youth-Friendly employers who were present to accept their Youth Employer awards. None of this would be possible without the time and dedication of our YES employers, who are now offering over 700 opportunities to local Youth. In particular, congratulations to our special award winners, MediaWorks for the best Open Session, and to Darren Jennings who received our Youth Employment Success ‘Good Bugger’ Award, for consistently going above and beyond in his duties as a YES Youth-Friendly employer.
John Allen, recently retired Regional Commissioner for MSD, spoke to the room about the importance of our approach to youth unemployment. John stressed that it is time to take hold of the mission of ‘no youth left behind’ and it is up to employers to get behind this. While John has been such an integral part of bringing Youth Employment Success to where it is today, he does not wish to be seen as the hero - as he wants the incredible success of YES to live on long after himself. We thank you again, John, for your incredible support and dedication. We are truly lucky to have your ongoing support as a staunch ambassador for Youth employment in Dunedin.
We were lucky enough also, to hear from Sergeant Trevor Thompson of NZ Police. Trevor spoke about his heavy involvement in generating positive outcomes for Dunedin youth by assisting many in obtaining their driver's licence. Not only is this helping keep youth safe, but also opening doors for employment opportunities that require a driver's licence. It's the one-on-one time and dedication that Trevor spends with these youth, that really makes such a positive impact on their lives.
One of our fantastic Youth-Friendly employers, Tom Sweeney of Crew Consulting, spoke about his journey to where he is today, and about how important it is to give Youth opportunities to learn, and give them a chance, just as he was, to be able to shape his career. He stressed that offering up your time to help is what it's all about.
A fantastic evening, with many attendees signing up to become YES Youth-Friendly employers by the end of the evening! Thank you again to all that attended, and all involved. We look forward to seeing you all again soon and sharing more positive stories around Youth employment in Dunedin.