After recently attending Philanthropy New Zealand’s 2017 Summit, I posted a comment on the number of people in this country doing good for other New Zealanders. Nowhere was this more evident than in the finalists for the inaugural Philanthropy New Zealand Awards of which AMP Capital is a key sponsor.
There are many great people making a positive difference and worthwhile projects happening in the communities around us. However, we don’t always get the opportunity to celebrate the achievements of these unseen heroes and the good works in which they are involved. Therefore I am delighted that we have the opportunity to do so through our sponsorship of the AMP Capital People’s Choice Award for a community changemaker.
This inaugural award was created to recognise a New Zealand individual and a project they have led that has achieved positive change with the support of philanthropic funding. And this year it was awarded to Springboard Community Works, led by Gary Diprose.
Like many people, I did not know much about Springboard Community Works until they were nominated as a finalist by one of their key supporters Vodafone New Zealand Foundation. Since then I have learned about the excellent results and positive change for young people and their whanau they have delivered – reducing youth crime, unemployment and increasing community well-being.
Springboard Community Works was founded in 2002 to support at risk youth and families, and has worked to change the lives of hundreds of young people. They run various programmes to engage and connect, upskill and mentor marginalised young people and families, including alternative education, youth offender intervention, work transition initiatives, and family support services. Springboard has also received accolades from Police and local schools.
Gary Diprose is the founder of Springboard Community Works and a recipient of the Kiwibank ‘Local Hero’ award in November 2016. In February 2016 Springboard Community Works was also a semi-finalist of the Community of the Year Award. Following the success of the Springboard model, Gary is now collaborating with like-minded organisations to replicate similar outcomes across other communities and build a network of social change innovators.
Springboard’s founding belief that every young person is of value. I heartedly endorse this belief, and support the view that our community is a better place to live if we work together to assist vulnerable young people develop into contributing members of society.
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