More than 1000 students from Taradale and surrounding schools, along with parents, special guests including Napier Mayor Kirsten Wise and veterans, will gather at the Taradale Memorial Clock Tower this Friday, 16 April at 11am for the Taradale and Districts Schools Spirit of ANZAC Commemoration.
Now in its sixth year, the commemoration has been planned by a committee made up of senior pupils from both Taradale and Tamatea high schools, to acknowledge ANZAC and the sacrifices made by many brave young men and women.
Greendale Services Association Manager and Veteran, Peter Grant, is overseeing the commemoration and says the youth are encouraged to plan, prepare and conduct a commemoration relevant to young people.
“As veterans we appreciate that we are getting older so we took it upon ourselves to try and ensure that the young people in our community understand that peace and freedom come at a price, and that we, as a country, have already paid a huge price for the country we enjoy today,” Peter says.
“We decided the best way to pass on this legacy was to ensure that our young people understood these aspects of our history in the hope that they carry them forward to future generations.
“Therefore, as in previous years, there will be no adults taking any part in the commemoration. It is all done by young people, from the opening address to the closing prayer, and frankly it gives us all great faith in the future leaders of our district and country.”
Each of the 21 schools participating have been encouraged to create their own tribute wreath to lay at the foot of the Memorial Clock Tower.
Commemoration Committee Chair and Tamatea High School Head Boy, Jack Winiana says the intent is to make the remembrance personal for young people, allowing them to show and feel respect and reverence for ANZAC in their own way.
“It has been a great experience working with a good bunch of people,” Jack says of working with the committee.
Commemoration Committee members and Taradale High School Deputy Head Boy and Girl, Joel Hagen and Emma Findlay say they too have enjoyed the experience.
“I’ve learnt how a committee works and how to form decisions as part of a group,” Joel says.
Emma adds, “It was awesome to be part of something I wouldn’t usually be a part of.”
Members of the public are warmly welcomed to attend the commemoration in the lead up to ANZAC Day and to witness first-hand our very own future leaders in action.
Absent: Ocean Karaitiana (Tamatea HS, Artwork), Murray Pilmer (GSA Committee Member
12 April 2021
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