Today I was lucky enough to hold a stand at Sort It Expo Palmerston North, to represent Palmy Changemakers Tribe, whom are a part of the National Changemakers Tribe. Changemakers Tribe is all about connecting like minded young people so they can collaborate on projects and ideas they are passionate about.

In June (after Massey University exams have finished) we will be holding an Open Night of Awesomeness to connect youth and young adults with like minded people, dates yet to be finalised.

How Palmy Changemakers Tribe Got Started

The Palmy chapter come about after I had started a number of volunteer projects with Palmerston North City Council Digital Champions initiative, and Interserve. My good friends Sai Natarajan, Connor Hartley, Arni Agar and Samir Loumachi are into web design and programming, so I thought perhaps we could collaborate on the projects together. We now meet each month at Youth Space Palmerston North.

Sort It Expo

Sort It Expo is an annual careers, jobs and opportunities Expo for high school students, the perfect place to promote youth connecting and collaborating! Since Changemakers Tribe is all shaped by the members and what they are working on, I decided to apply that philosophy to the expo stand that we had. I arrived to the expo ten minutes before it was due to start and pinned up a single question on the wall, and a couple answers to get the ball rolling.

What is something you can stay up all night talking about??

Throughout the day as buses of students arrived from local high schools, students wrote out what they are passionate about on a post it notes, and placed it around the question. Soon students started to add their own questions up on the walls without prompting.

What do you see yourself doing in the future??
What do you want when you are older?? Posted up by Eden & Kaya
What's a skill You've always admired in someone else that you have always wanted to learn?? Suggested by Janelle Collins
What is something you are working on right now?? - Added by James Collinson

Each post it note up on the wall represented a conversation with a young person about what they are passionate about. We got many troll answers, and many thought provoking responses. It was awesome to connect with so many young people to see where they are at, and see them excited about the chance to connect with like minded people on particular ideas/projects they are passionate about.

Notably, I met Caitlin Kirkwood-Woollams whom is producing a short film called Checkmate?, and is involved in a theatre company called Basement Co.? When I told her about Changemakers Tribe she was like where has has this been all my life? and had James Collinson on about how he hadn’t told her about the the Tribe.

The Results

There were responses from 57 people to the question What could you could stay up all night talking about?. However some post it notes had multiple answers and so there are 64 answers in total. The full list of responses for each question are included in the Changemakers Sort it Expo Results spreadsheet (download). I have categorised the responses to the first question (see the spreadsheet) in attempt to identify themes, producing the following results. The responses are by no means statistically robust, and the most value would have been in the conversations I had. However it is interesting to see the responses to the questions!

Responses range from Dank memes? to changing the world?. My favourite response was How I have bad friends for keeping me up all night?.