The seven representatives came from a range of backgrounds, interests and skills, and were selected to display a cross-section of youth views and ideas from throughout the region.

Waikato’s representatives travelled down to Mt Cheeseman in Christchurch for a three-day forum to learn about new ideas and meet new people.

Jason Sebestian, Waikato Humanitarian Services Coordinator for New Zealand Red Cross, said that the forum was an excellent opportunity for young people to get involved with New Zealand Red Cross.

“It’s a brilliant chance for them to learn more about the organisation whilst being inspired with the possibilities of changing the world through their roles within New Zealand Red Cross."

Jose Gomez, one of the young people who attended the forum, said that the experience was one he will never forget and he plans to continue his association with New Zealand Red Cross into the future.

“I have to say, I did not expect it to be as inspiring as it was. The whole experience was amazing but the best thing is the feeling of new friends and family the forum left in each one of us.

“I’m here for the long run and I expect to make it count. I will be working toward making sure young New Zealanders get the tools that they need to make a difference and to protect the things that matter.”