Two Tauranga teenagers who've developed a prototype project that could change the way search and rescue operates in the future have been recognised at the 2017 New Zealand Youth Awards.
The Change Maker Award (Community Safety) recipients Abigail Chaytor and Alexandra Groos, both 17, received their awards during an official ceremony held at Parliament on Tuesday.
Abigail and Alexandra are Youth Search and Rescue Leaders who have developed the ESRI ArcGIS Pre Planning Mapping Project, which is designed to improve decision making in Search and Rescue and Emergency Management situations in New Zealand.
Attending the NZ Youth Awards was Bay of Plenty MP Todd Muller who was particularly proud to see Abigail and Alexandra take home the ‘Change Maker' award for their prototype project.
“These outstanding young women, along with all other winners and nominees, have shown enormous talent, dedication and potential.
“With such bright young minds achieving incredible feats, I have every confidence that the future of the Bay, and New Zealand, is in safe hands.”
Abigail and Alexandra will be presenting their prototype project at the Australian and New Zealand Disaster and Emergency Management Conference in Brisbane during May, as well as to NZ Police Search and Rescue.
Youth Minister Nikki Kaye says the NZ Youth Awards recognise young Kiwis who've achieved outstanding results and given back to their communities, as well as those who've made a significant contribution towards supporting young people.
“When you look at the drive, skills, compassion and integrity evident in the winners across all the categories, it's clear that our young people have enormous talent and potential, and the future of our country is in safe hands.
“As Youth Minister, I'm thrilled to be able to provide opportunities to inspire, encourage and celebrate the achievements of our young people and those who support them.”
For more information about the 2017 New Zealand Youth Awards winners, visit www.myd.govt.nz