Inspiring Young Leaders

Sir Peter Blake believed in the incredible potential of young kiwis to achieve great things. He knew that inspiring leaders of any age could be found in every corner of New Zealand. Sir Peter showed all of us there are leaders and there are dreamers. Leaders make things happen. Dreamers have a vision. The truly special people do both. In that spirit, and in partnership with Westpac, our Young Leader Awards celebrate young people whose outstanding leadership uplifts their school community. Each year, we offer one award to a Year 5 – 8 student in every NZ Primary and Intermediate school during Leadership Week.

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Get involved

All Primary and Intermediate schools in NZ are eligible to participate. We make one award per school, to a Year 5 – 8 student who you identify as being a fantastic leader. Your school can design a process for choosing your Young Leader. Staff could identify an amazing young leader, or students might like to choose one of their peers. We know how much this award can mean to a young person and we would like to see every eligible school in the country participate every year, let it become part of your annual schedule of awards and let the excitement build up to the event each season.

Who can get this award?

One student in each school, in Year 5 - 8, can get this award. To help you, here are some of our ideas about the kind of student you’ll choose. We think great leaders

  • have their own leadership style - it could be a quiet or a big, bold approach
  • work well with their peers, not just alone
  • communicate well, and can relate to both students and teachers
  • are doing good things in their school, home, and community
  • aren’t afraid of a hard task, and get stuck in
  • are thoughtful and considerate of others
  • take on extra duties, and do them well
  • do things with a great attitude
  • know how to have fun.

If you have any other queries about the programme, please contact or (09) 307 8875.


What does YLA cost?

YLA is fully sponsored by Westpac. There are no costs associated with this programme for your school. We make up amazing prizepacks for each award winner, and with Westpac's help they are distributed to your local branch. The presenters come out to you, with the prizepack, and your young leader is acknowledged in a school assembly.

How do we choose just one Young Leader?

We know it is hard to choose just one person to receive this award. We have a limited number of these packs, and want as many schools, as possible, to benefit from this leadership initiative. You could decide on some criteria of your own, that are aligned to your school values. Should you still have trouble choosing, then perhaps look at the age of the candidates, and remember there is always next year for a younger person to be acknowledged.