National conference - wrap up
We were delighted to host the recent one day National Youth Mentoring Conference held in Auckland on Tuesday 14 June 2016. The programme featured 15 keynote speakers and panel members, offering attendees the opportunity to listen, to learn and to consider things for the future and to see the newly published Youht Mentoring Guide in public shortly after the launch.
Here is a brief snapshot of the day:
- Our joint opening address from Nathan Mikaere-Wallis, X-Factor Education, facilitating the application of neuroscience to youth practice and Hana O'Regan the newly appointed General Manager of Oranga/ Wellbeing for Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, explored the concept of Tuakana/Teina (peer support/mentoring). How does the concept of rakatirataka (leadership/excellence/role modelling) and cultural empowerment inform our understanding of the role of mentor and the concept of Tuakana/Teina?
- The morning panel provided a full rundown on the newly published 2nd edition of the Guide to to Effective and Safe Practice in Youth Mentoring, to enable people to take it back to their work environment and start to use it
- Michael Moka, the young and engaging Founder of Indigenous Growth limited spoke about 'Hara taku toa I te toa takitahi - My success is not because of me alone' and he shared his story of being mentored.
- Robyn Scott, Director of MYD, outlined the government’s community investment approach and what this means for the youth sector.
- The afternoon panel covered a number of important local issues in the youth development / mentoring sector
Anya Satyanand, CE of Ara Taiohi, the peak body for youth development in Aotearoa, discussed the state of youth development in New Zealand in 2016 and presented international and national perspectives.
Dave Richards, Projects and Strategy Manager at The Tindall Foundation discussed The Foundation's approach to youth development funding and collaboration and shared ideas for achieving long term sustainability.
Dr Pat Bullen, Senior Lecturer in youth development at The University of Auckland provided an overview of the youth mentoring research conducted in Aotearoa New Zealand to date, highlighting findings that both converge with and diverge from mentoring practice overseas.
- Following afternoon tea, we had representatives from Great Potentials Foundation, the Solomon Group and Tuilaepa Youth Mentoring Services share insights in to their mentoring programmes and experiences.
- Our closing keynote speaker, Dr Karlo Mila, Pasifika poet, writer and researcher, talked about ‘Opening our ears to ancestral mentors:' the importance for young Pasifika and Maori to have access to ancestors as mentors - to draw on and re-engage with ancestral knowledge, wisdom, language, worldviews, wellbeing constructs and proverbs - a treasure-house of somewhat marginalized ‘mentoring’ knowledge.
Our previous national conferences have included at least one international keynote and ran over two days. But trustees decided on a variation to this pattern, to make the most of the opportunity to focus on the depth of national expertise, captured in our new Guide and the day was summed up so memorably in our first-ever conference song which is currently being recorded and will be shared via the NZYMN website shortly.