Runners-up go to Wellington2 min readReading Time: 2 minutes
Two local students have recently had the chance to shadow MP, Priyanca Radhakrishnan, at Parliament, thanks to a generous scholarship from community organisation,To Wahi.
In July, 120 Youth MPs were selected for Youth Parliament 2022 to advocate for their community and debate the issues that affect youth. Two of the finalists, Sophie-Love Roberts and Molly Stewart, were close runners-up and Priyanca was so impressed with them that she wanted to give them the chance to experience Parliament.
Molly, who’s currently studying a law and commerce conjoint degree at AUT, was inspired by the events and campaigns they took part in while at Parliament. “The experience inspired me to get more involved in my local community. Although I have lived in the Maungakiekie electorate for around six years, I was never really involved. After talking to Priyanca, it became super clear to me that there is more to an electorate than just living near each other or having the same postcode. We have communities in need, events to attend, and people to talk to. If we have the resources to lend a hand, as I believe I do, we should do what we can for those around us,” she says.
Sophie, a Year 13 student at Onehunga High School, says the memorable experience has inspired her and helped her to understand the positive difference you can make as an MP.
“I was very humbled and honoured to be selected for the opportunity. Travelling to Wellington and getting to be in the Beehive was so exciting. There is so much more to Parliament, and this trip really helped me to understand this. I am very interested in politics, particularly in how a government runs, the way Parliament is formed and the subsequent changes or additions to the law that occur because of this. In the future I hope to practice law, and one day I would love to become an MP myself.”
Molly and Sophie will be updating To Wahi on some upcoming youth projects, and they will hopefully establish a youth advisory panel with support from Priyanca.
(Sophie and Molly in front of The Beehive in Wellington)