Introducing Youth Trustee Lucy Boniface

Date: 9th July 2024

The voice of youth is essential to our work. We understand that to combat climate change and dramatic biodiversity loss, young people need both practical skills and local knowledge. That’s why education is such a big part of our work.

Leadership experience in environmental management and conservation is important too. We offer that experience to future leaders through a dedicated seat on our board for a Youth Trustee. Currently that person is 16 year old Lucy Boniface, a Year 12 student at Wakatipu High School, who you might have seen carving it up on the ice hockey rink or hitting headlines as assistant captain of the winning New Zealand under-18 women’s team. As it turns out, she has a passion for native biodiversity too!

We caught up with Lucy to learn a bit more about the role so far.

Youth Trustee Lucy Boniface representing Whakatipu Reforestation Trust at a Volunteer South event in 2024
Lucy representing WRT at the recent Volunteer South event.

What interested you in the role of Youth Trustee?

I wanted to join the Wakatipu Reforestation Trust as a Youth Trustee as I have a strong passion for the environment and conservation. As a Youth Trustee I have the opportunity to help connect the younger generations to the Trust and the goals we are working towards. By being a Youth Trustee, I can help inspire my peers and make a real impact in preserving our natural surroundings for the future.

Why does the role matter?

As a Youth Trustee I can provide a different perspective on topics, issues or ideas in the WRT meetings. I believe that a Youth Trustee is a crucial connection between the younger generations of Queenstown and the older generations, helping everyone work towards a shared goal. I am also a member of the Environmental Council at Wakatipu High School and so far I have found that I can be a line of communication between the two, for example getting the nursery at school set up.

What do you personally hope to take away from your time with the Trust?

In the future, I want my career to have a strong environmental focus. Being a part of the WRT has opened my eyes to the various environmental jobs and roles available. I would like to gain a greater understanding of how to communicate with different groups of people and get them involved in the projects. I would also love to create personal connections in the community. Ultimately, I want to be able to say I made a difference and gave it my all.

How has your experience been so far?

I have attended two meetings along with a strategy meeting, so far, and now have a far better understanding of the ins and outs of the trust. Before becoming a trustee I had no idea of the hours of work that goes on behind the scenes. Being a Youth Trustee has also given me the chance to hear the ideas of other members and think outside the box for how I can make a difference or what I can bring to the table.

Think you’d make a good Youth Trustee in future? Get in touch.

Posted in: Latest News