A group of exceptional young Kiwis, mentors, volunteers and leaders will take the spotlight for their resilience, self-belief and contribution to society at the annual Graeme Dingle Foundation’s 2019 Excellence Awards being held on Wednesday evening.

Over 200 people will gather at the AUT Sir Paul Reeves Building in Auckland, including Governor General Dame Patsy Reddy, GNZM, QSO, in a celebration of the 27,000 children and young people who go through the Foundation’s programmes each year, helping them to be stronger, healthier and happier individuals

The Graeme Dingle Foundation believes that every society owes every child the conditions to thrive, belong and contribute meaningfully. Its contribution to NZ society is to help Kiwi children and young people develop mental fitness and resilience through self-belief, so that ultimately all of our young people believe that ‘what they have inside is greater than any obstacle’.

Since 1995 more than a quarter of a million young people have passed through the six programmes – Kiwi Can, Stars, Career Navigator, Project K, MYND and Kiwi Tahi. Many of these amazing young people have bounced back from hardship and conquered immense challenges to chart a positive course through life.

The Excellence Awards are a celebration of these young people, their achievements and successes. It is a prestigious event where people from across all the programmes gather in Auckland for an evening with special guests, key sponsors, their parents and caregivers to acknowledge how they have achieved overcoming their obstacle, fears and personal challenges.

While the Excellence Awards focus mainly on the young people, they also celebrate the achievements of Foundation staff, Programme Coordinators and volunteers from across the country.


Released by the Graeme Dingle Foundation.

 For more information, please contact: Pam Smith on
or 021 152 6272 / 09 477 6244.


About the Graeme Dingle Foundation

  • The Graeme Dingle Foundation is the highly successful youth charity named in recognition of Kiwi adventurer and personality Sir Graeme Dingle who founded the not-for-profit organisation with his partner Jo-anne Wilkinson in 1995.
  • Sir Graeme and Lady Dingle had a vision to improve New Zealand’s negative youth statistics. They have helped over 250,000 young Kiwis be more confident, find purpose and direction, and achieve success.
  • An Infometrics report in 2019 found that New Zealand benefits to the tune of nearly $8 for every $1 invested in the Graeme Dingle Foundation, in the form of reduced crime, young people getting better jobs and fewer young people becoming dependent on benefits.
  • The Graeme Dingle Foundation continues to run school-based programmes for thousands of Kiwis aged between 5 and 18 – Kiwi Can, Stars, Career Navigator and Project K, along with MYND (an Auckland based programme for youth offenders). These initiatives aim to broaden horizons, offer opportunities and give young people the chance to become the next generation of successful parents, leaders and business people.
  • For more information visit

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