Ōtaki Kids Market (Ōtaki Women's Community Club) - Volunteer Story Celebration 2024

I would like to nominate the Volunteers at the Ōtaki Kids Market. They play a crucial role in ensuring the smooth and successful operation of this special event. With a passion for supporting young entrepreneurs and creating a fun and engaging experience for children and families, these volunteers dedicate their time and energy to various tasks before, during, and after the market.

Volunteers at the Ōtaki Kids Market run the entire event from start to finish, including promotion, marketing, setup, stall bookings and everything in between. They are an essential part of creating a positive and memorable experience for everyone involved. Their dedication, enthusiasm, and willingness to lend a helping hand contribute to the success and continued growth of this beloved community event, enriching the lives of young entrepreneurs and families in the Ōtaki region.

In the past 12 months, over 433 young people have been able to have stalls at the Ōtaki Market. Young people come from, Ōtaki, Te Horo, Waikane, Paraparaumu, Ramauti, Porirua, Tawa, Johnsonville, Wellington, Lower and Upper Hutt. Levin, Manakau, Foxton, Shannon, Palmerston North, Whanganui, Danniverke, Ashhurst, Taihape and even as far as Nelson.

The team have made enhancements to the Kids market, with a “Best Kids Stall” judged by Mayor of Kapiti and provide certificates of achievement to each young person.

Collaboration with Coast Access Radio, means young people are invited to head down to the studio and help promote the market with live interviews.

Young people also help with behind the scenes work, from going to the Ōtaki Community Board Meetings and applying for funding, to helping with set up and pack down at the market.

The Ōtaki Kids Market hosted a stall at the Kapiti Food Fair, called the Rangatahi Market, which provided a platform for 10 young foodie tamariki and rangatahi to showcase their talents and entrepreneurial endeavours at a national event. They have been invited back for 2024.Three lucky kids from the 2023 team were invited to be on the live TVNZ broadcast with the Kāpiti Food Fair organisers.

The market's commitment to supporting young talent extends beyond providing stalls. The one-year birthday celebrations in January 2024 provided the opportunity for two young baking enthusiasts, Zhyla 12 yrs and Meia 10 yrs from Ōtaki, where able to showcase their talents by decorating a cake, which was then given out free to everyone at the market. Cake Cutting ceremony was with Councillor Warwick.

Over the past year, volunteers have created a safe space at the kids market and have so many amazing future plans to help this special event succeed.

  • Runners up in the 2023 Wellington Airport Awards for Child/Youth Development
  • Recognised by Volunteer Kapiti in 2023
  • Recognised by The Kapiti Kindness Trust 2024
  • Collaborated with the Kapiti Food Fair to have a Rangatahi stall in 2023 (Invited back for 2024)
  • Multiple Newspaper articles
  • 2 x TVNZ Breakfast appearances
  • Interview on Newstalk ZB
  • An amazing collaboration with Coast Access Radio
  • Personal messages from Suzy Kato, celebrity baker & Great Kiwi Bake Off Judge Jordan Rondall and CEO and Founder of GirlBoss Alexia Hilbertidou
  • Successful Pop Up Kids Markets at various themed Ōtaki Markets
  • Celebrated One Year anniversary of the Kids Market with a cake decorated by young people
  • Otaki College Matariki Night Market, with five young stall holders attending
  • Organised the up coming Ōtaki Kids Workshop in July
  • Include young people in behind the scenes work, set-up, pack-down, funding applications