Witi's Story:

I am Witi and I come from Christchurch, I am 19 years old and used to live in a Care and Protection home.

In 2002 my Mother died and I was cared for by my elderly father.

In 2006 I started pushing a number of boundaries which eventually saw me robbing a shop at knife point. I was arrested, put in the cells and then sent out to a remand home that night.

I was processed through the Youth Justice System for 6 months, during this time I was introduced to the Joshua Foundation and the Duke of Ed.

I have just recently completed my Silver Award and have started the Gold.

I am enjoying the challenge and already have some great memories such as cutting firewood for underprivileged people for my Service, playing basketball and meeting new mates.

My best memories are the expeditions, especially getting to know other people and learning how to tramp.

Watching the ocean and seeing the sun disappear off the horizon and walking on a swing bridge and through rivers on our qualifying tramp were choice!

I am looking forward to adding many more memories during my Gold Award.

I am pleased to announce that I am now out of the Youth Justice system and looking forward to my future.

I am going to a polytechnic course and want to become a builder or a joiner with long term goals of joining the Army as an engineer.

When I got in trouble with the law I gave up all of my sports and outside interests. The DofE have encouraged me to take up sports again and I have been playing Rugby for New Brighton and Cricket for Parklands. I will be using these two sports for my Silver and Gold Awards.

The Award has given me a new focus and allowed me to reassess my life ambitions.

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