New Zealand Youth Delegation Team
We are a diverse group of young New Zealanders who will use our unique skills to represent the demands of New Zealand on an international stage. We are motivated by every aspect of climate change and its impact on future generations.
Bula, my name is Kya Lal and I am ecstatic to be a part of NZYD 2014. I am currently in my 5th and final year of a conjoint BA/LLB majoring in Pacific studies at the University of Auckland and will be starting my BA Hons in Development Studies next year. After which I plan to pursue a Masters in Environmental Law. I am originally from Fiji and moved to New Zealand in 2006. Being from the Pacific has sparked my passion for Climate Change mitigation and adaption as one of the most vulnerable regions in the world. Beyond Climate change my other passions involve youth empowerment through UN Youth New Zealand and working with Maori and Pacific communities. When I’m not studying, volunteering or engaging with community or climate work you can usually find me tucked away with a good book, at Bikram yoga or hanging out with family and friends.
Kia ora koutou, I’m Chris and I grew up in Porirua New Zealand. I describe myself as a pragmatic idealist, with a never-ending thirst for knowledge and a burning desire to make the world a better place, and together these forces have shaped my life. My goal all throughout school was to go to university, and I graduated in 2010 with both a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts (because one degree was never going to be satisfactory). I found the answer to my question “what next?” in the offices of government, and discovered that some of the depth of thought and effort required to make an intentional change in society was formidable but not insurmountable. During this time I was also cooking up a plan to learn more about environmentalism in China, until one day I decided to actually go out and become an environmentalist in China. With delight and a little help from others, my dream came true, and in the process I discovered so much more about China, and about life, than I could have dreamt of. Now I turn my attention to the challenge of getting seven billion people to agree about the need for urgent action on climate change, and the journey keeps getting more and more amazing from here.
I’m an nature-loving outdoors girl from Otetahi Christchurch. I love to get out tramping, camping, exploring, and meeting new people. I studied at Otago University completing a BAppSci in Environmental Management and a BA in Politics. Throughout my study most of my time has been devoted to campus environmental groups, kick-starting Otago Uni’s community garden, and with the Coal Action Network Aotearoa, fighting plans for Southland lignite coal – which have since been scrapped! In 2013 I traveled and studied abroad in the U.S. and Canada, where I attended Powershift BC, learned about the devastation of the tar sands developments and shut down a highway in New Brunswick to halt natural gas exploration on unceded native land. This experience really brought home for me the enormity of the challenge that we are facing, but also the realisation of how broad the benefits of a clean energy future will be for everyone. I’m amped to make 2014 a big year for seeing some real action on climate change!
I’m Maddie Little and my favourite thing in the world is white and yellow flowers. A school leaver in 2013 and volunteer teacher in Malawi for the most part of 2014, I plan to study Law and Arts, majoring in Development Studies and International Relations. I’m passionate about fighting injustice whether it is the way the human race is treating mother earth, people suffering under a corrupt government or students like the ones I have taught this year not being able to afford $9 school term fees. Nothing excites me more than working with youth and the thought of the potential we have to create a positive change in our future. Amongst all this crazy stuff, I love to read, climb mountains, eat and play netball! I want the benefits of small things like buying local produce and using push bikes or public transport to be recognised for the potential they have to make a significant change in reducing New Zealand’s carbon footprint, and I want it to be cool! We are in charge of what happens and I am constantly overwhelmed with a great sense of hope for us, we have the ability to put things right again. I know climate change isn’t an easy fix but I’m keen to tackle it head on with a bunch of other enthusiastic, like-minded people, what have we got to lose?