Invercargill’s first youth festival to be held

Invercargill’s first youth focussed festival is set to be held on Saturday.

The Block Takeover Youth Festival, which is being held in collaboration with Youthline, Number 10 Youth One Stop Shop, South Alive and Te Rourou One Foundation,is aimed at connecting rangatahi with youth support services and networks. Held at the Civic Theatre on 18 May between 1pm – 6pm, the festival is open to all young people aged 12 – 24.

Invercargill City Youth Council Chair Liam Calder said the event intended to educate and motivate local rangatahi.

“We’ve got some great speakers, workshops and activities planned for the festival which we hope will inspire those heading along. If one of those speakers or activities can spark a flame inside a young person attending, which they can nuture and grow into a career or a new pathway they hadn’t considered, then that’d be a great outcome.”

The festival included talks from internationally-renowned speakers, workshops, stalls, kapa haka and musical performances, parkour and gaming, exhibitions and food trucks which would be held in the CBD, around the Civic Theatre. Gore Mayor Ben Bell, leading brain and neuroscience trainer Kathryn Berkett and climate activist Dylan Chand would all feature as keynote speakers.

Calder said the idea for the festival had been born in part from the lack of a local youth focussed festival.

“Last year the Youth Council got together and discussed the possibility of running a similar event to Wellington’s Festival for the Future, but on a localised level. We wanted to give rangatahi the opportunity to learn how more about how leadership and innovation can have an impact in their area.”

The Youth Council idea worked well with the aims of Te Rourou and the other youth organisations to help create connections for disadvantaged youth as part of Youth Week, which is coming up later in May.

More information on the event, including workshop registration can be found at