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Zeal opens $1M youth development centre in Kāpiti

We have finally opened the doors of our $1M youth development centre in Kāpiti last Saturday.

Zeal Kāpiti was developed in partnership with Kāpiti Coast District Council, and is set in the heart of Kāpiti at 132 Rimu Road, Paraparaumu.

The purpose-built youth development centre features a performance space, rehearsal rooms, creative space and design suite. The centre was gifted the name Te Roopu Ngākaunui Ki Kāpiti, meaning “The group with the big heart”, by Council kaumātua koro Don Te Maipi.

Zeal welcomes all young people in Kāpiti to enjoy the centre, which will provide all ages events, afternoon hangouts (including free WiFi) and creative programmes.

Zeal Kāpiti is the culmination of an eight-year dream that began in 2010, when Kāpiti Coast Youth Council began advocating for a youth development centre. In 2012, the Kāpiti Coast District Council agreed to place the centre in the long-term plan. In 2015, we were brought on board to deliver the centre.

Zeal Kāpiti Manager, David Orchard (Dooley), has spearheaded the project.

“Zeal is the only all ages venue on the coast, dedicated to giving young people a space to perform and show their talents,” says Dooley.

“The journey to having a youth development centre was started by young people here, with the Kāpiti Coast Youth Council being a driving force and a strong voice from youth across the district to Council. Zeal will continue to listen to that voice and get behind creative young people using the centre as a hub for this creativity.”
With the centre opening, Zeal will maintain its strong presence in the Kāpiti district, delivering mobile services via the coffee cart and music box.

“Since I’ve been going to Zeal, I’ve figured out what I want to do in the future and how I want to get there,” says Hannah (16), who has been involved in Zeal’s Programmes. “I feel like I belong somewhere.”

Zeal is thankful to all the supporters who have enabled the building of Zeal Kāpiti including Kāpiti Coast District Council, Lottery Community Facilities, New Zealand Community Trust Infinity Foundation, Waikanae Lions Club, Coastlands Shoppingtown, Paraparaumu Pak’n’Save, Transpower Community Care Fund, Pelorus Trust, and Air Rescue Services Ltd.

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At Zeal, we don’t want a culture by default; we want to name it, create it and hold each other to it. And the way we arrive at shared culture is through embodying shared values.

“The thing that amazes me the most about the Zeal team is their single minded passion to make a difference in the lives of young people. A lot of people go through their life asking “what’s in it for me,” but the Zeal team ask “what can I do for others”.”