Festival for the Future coming to Auckland

Festival For The FutureThe fourth annual Festival for the Future is coming to Auckland for the first time. A vibrant event that celebrates Kiwi innovation, the festival showcases dynamic young people who will share their visions, experiences and initiatives. From ending extreme poverty, families growing their own food, to re­imagining Christchurch, #FFTF14 demonstrates what’s possible and aims to inspire others to create change in their own communities.

The programme includes talks by 4 Keynotes and 15 Young Innovators, a series of workshops led by organisations such as Curative and Leadership New Zealand, as well as time for networking. This format is geared to support and inspire the next generation to spark and grow ideas for a better world. It brings together 16–30 year olds from business and entrepreneurship, arts and education, to science, technology and community sectors in one highly charged, creative and collaborative space.

This year, 400 festival goers from across the country, will converge on AUT’s Business School’s beautiful Sir Paul Reeves Building in central Auckland for an action­?packed weekend of new ideas and connections. Previously held in Wellington, 2014 represents a year of evolution and growth for the national event.

Scholarships

Amongst the 400 attendees, there will be 50 rangatahi (young people) from a diverse range of backgrounds who have received scholarship assistance. This year, Inspiring Stories Trust has partnered with the A?kina Foundation to grow the next generation of social entrepreneurs and provide scholarships to those who might otherwise be unable to attend. Naima Ali, a Community Youth Leader for the Refugee Youth Action Network sees the wider benefits of this life­changing opportunity: ‘I won’t be just representing myself, but my whole community’. Recipients are asked to share their experiences with their networks when they return home. Hundreds of applications were received by passionate young people from around New Zealand. The Festival’s scholarship fund will help 50 of these young people gain confidence, make connections and learn new skills. Another key benefit is that areas away from the main centres will be represented.

Festival website: www.festivalforthefuture.org.nz/

Why is social enterprise important right now?

Social enterprise is a fast rising sector in New Zealand. Young people today are often forging their own paths, attracted to alternative enterprise models which are grounded in social, environmental, economic and cultural outcomes. Government is also interested in developing this sector. Keynote speaker Dr Jan Owen, CEO of the Foundation for Young Australians, will share an Australian perspective and her knowledge about investment in this sector.

What does Festival for the Future have to do with this?

Festival for the Future is created and run by Inspiring Stories Trust, a charity operating nationwide with a vision to see every young New Zealander unleash their potential to change the world. The Festival is a critical part of the ecosystem that Inspiring Stories Trust is building to support young New Zealanders.

Who are some of the people involved?

Guy Ryan

Twenty eight year old Guy Ryan founded Inspiring Stories Trust when he was just 24 years old. Guy’s passion and motivation comes from the simple question: Imagine if every young New Zealander unleashed their potential to change the world? Festival for the Future sits alongside two other dynamic programmes that Guy devised ­ Making a Difference, a film­making competition, and Live the Dream, an intensive accelerator programme for the next generation of social entrepreneurs.

Keynote Speakers:

Emeline Afeaki­Mafile’o

A serial social entrepreneur, Emeline won a prestigious ‘Woman of Influence’ Award in 2013 for her initiative and contribution to the Pasifika community. Emeline has developed a string of enterprises that span South Auckland to the Pacific – including Affirming Works,Tupu’anga Coffee, and the Otahuhu Community Cafe?.

Andy Hamilton

As CEO of The Icehouse, Andy Hamilton has led the development of an entrepreneurial ecosystem that has seen many start­ups grow from idea to proof of concept, to scale. He is also a councillor on the Japan­ New Zealand Business Council, and a previous Chair of Incubators New Zealand and Angel Association New Zealand. Both Andy and Emeline are Blake leaders with the Sir Peter Blake Trust.

Young Innovators:

Jade Temepara

Mother of five Jade established ‘Hand Over a Hundy’, a not­ for­ profit organisation that mentors and teaches families to grow and produce their own vegetable gardens with a sponsorship of one hundred dollars. The challenge lies not in learning the art of gardening, but in producing more than they need in order to sell a hundred dollars worth and pass it on to the next family. Jade was a finalist in Yealand’s ‘Raise a glass to success’ campaign, recognising outstanding New Zealanders making a difference in their communities.

Te Rawhitiroa Bosch

Te Rawhitiroa is part of the Enviroschools’ Foundation national team, working as a project manager for Kotuia! a nationwide youth development programme. Kotuia! supports rangatahi Maori around Aotearoa to connect people to people and people to place through performance. Te Rawhitiroa received Vodafone World of Difference (WOD) funding in 2010 which helped launch the pilot year of the programme.

Yoseph Ayele

Originally from Ethopia, Yospeh is the Co­creator of KiwiConnect which builds global bridges to connect world­class talent, responsible capital, and high­tech innovation to the fast­growing New Zealand startup ecosystem. Yoseph has a Bachelor’s degree in Social Studies from Harvard, was an Independent researcher for the University of Cambridge’s programme for sustainable leadership and a Summer Associate at the Ashoka foundation.