Recognition for YMCA

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Winning smiles .. YMCA South and Mid Canterbury team members (from left) Christina Cullimore, Cath Slee and Michele Keggenhoff celebrate the team's success at the recent YMCA New Zealand National Convention. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

by Rachael Comer

YMCA South and Mid Canterbury has been recognised for its work in the community. The organisation swept the awards at the recent YMCA New Zealand National Convention held in Timaru.
Spokeswoman Michele Keggenhoff said the team won five awards. They were:

  • Innovation in a New Programme, for The Resiliency Toolkit Programme which began in South Canterbury secondary schools in 2016.
  • George Briggs Youth Award, for the 2014-15 Timaru District Youth Surveys, which enabled significant engagement with young people around the region.
  • Leading By Example, won by Ashburton tutor Jan Gilmoure for her work over a 31-year career in helping young people.
  • The Y That Catches the Eye, awarded to a YMCA that has successfully and consistently raised its profile within the communities it serves.
  • The YMCA New Zealand President’s Award, made to long-serving board member Mark Rogers in recognition of his more than 20 years’ service at local and national levels.

Mrs Keggenhoff said the organisation also won the innovation, youth and leading by example awards in 2015.
It has also expanded its Timaru District Youth Survey to cover THE Ashburton, Timaru, Waimate and Mackenzie Districts.
Mrs Keggenhoff said in 2014, THE YMCA conducted the first “comprehensive stocktake of young people’s views of their life in the Timaru District”, repeating it in 2015.
The survey asked participants questions such as whether the district was a good place in which to be a young person, what they would improve, whether they felt safe, where they would turn for help and whether they could get a good education and job.
More than 700 people from 12 to 24 took the survey.
She said the YMCA distributed the survey results to youth, social service and education organisations and also local government and the business community for use in planning.
“Since the survey has been recognised as an important, valued mechanism for [the] youth voice through which organisations can keep their fingers on the youth pulse, we have made an ongoing commitment to conducting it biennially.”