Annual Report 2022-2023

Youth Board Report

We started the year with five Board members – Zoe, Cha’Nel, Meghan, Kyle and Henare. We would like to acknowledge and thank Henare for his time on the board and the contributions made to the work we do. We appreciate the time he committed to the Board.

It is challenging for us as a Youth Board to juggle work, study, life and our voluntary roles – but we are all passionate about making a difference and we all believe we have a part to play in continuing the work done by the many youth boards and groups
prior to us.

Looking back over the past year there are a couple of highlights we would like to share and celebrate.

The biggest work programme we have had to focus on has been the World Federation of the Deaf Youth Section camp and General Assembly in Jeju, South Korea.

We were excited to receive more than 40 applications to attend the Youth Camp. Then we had the difficult job of selecting just 4 campers to attend the lifechanging event. The young people selected to represent us were Jorja, Cruze, Thando and Kaylee.

It felt rewarding to see them enjoying themselves while they were in the camp and on their return we are so pleased that they have shared how the camp was life-changing and – once again the WFDYS was life changing and opened up the world for the 2023 campers, as it has for the NZ campers in previous years.

The two board members who attended the WFDYS General Assembly were Zoe and Cha’Nel and they contributed to the decisions made including the selection of the next WFDYS Board and the locations of the upcoming WFDYS camps.

One of the advantages of attending events such as WFDYS camps and the WFD congress, is the opportunity to meet people and learn and share with others. We have strengthened our connections with Australia Deaf Youth and Fiji. We are meeting regularly with them to ensure that we can contribute to the work for the Oceania region. We are very conscious of the need to not only advocate for our own youth community but also play a part in supporting others such as Deaf youth in the Pacific.

In our local work we contributed to work programmes and Government focus groups to ensure a Deaf youth lens was included. Some of the resources that we played a part in were the 5 Ways to Wellbeing videos, the 25 Signs in Education booklet and, to celebrate International Week of Deaf People this year, we took part in a webinar along with parents of deaf children. We shared our experiences of having NZSL in our lives and the taonga that it is to each of us.

We have worked hard on growing our social media presence this year and this has been a success with our audience on both Instagram and Facebook growing. We also make use of Zoom and Slack.

The majority of our meetings are via Zoom, as a cost saving measure, but nothing beats being in the same room so when we are able to come together to meet we also try to put aside time to connect with the local deaf youth in the region. This is something we will continue to do through the next year. We are hoping to bring some new deaf youth into the board this year as the more we have to share the load with, the more we can achieve, please reach out to us if you are keen to be involved!

Send this to a friend