Hayley Xie from Macleans College had the opportunity to represent Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown at the Youth Parliament in Wellington, which is held every three years. She tells us about her day at the Beehive.
Last week, I was fortunate enough to attend Youth Parliament 2019 as the Youth MP representing Simeon Brown, National MP for Pakuranga.
This event, in which 120 young people from across the country meet at Parliament every three years to mimic the workings of our real New Zealand Government, marked the pinnacle of our journey as Youth MPs.
Upon arriving in Wellington, we attended an official tour and orientation evening.
Our first official day started off with the opening ceremony where I was fortunate enough to have a conversation with the lovely Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy.
Next, we headed into the debating chamber for Question Time with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and a few other Ministers, where I was able to ask the Minister of Finance on their recent plans of reducing debt to 20 per cent of GDP within the next three years.
The afternoon was jam-packed with select committee hearings and submissions, as well as a short caucus meeting with various MPs.
Day two was similarly exciting, as we had our Legislative Debate on the Sustainable Energy mock bill, followed by an intense personal vote.
After lunch, we got the opportunity to listen to other youth MPs passionately speak on a wide range of issues in the General Debate.
Although these past two days seemingly flew past me, it has been an absolute pleasure to represent the community of Pakuranga at Youth Parliament 2019. I am continually grateful for having grown up in such an amazing community. I have gained so much experience during my tenure as Youth MP, and I look forward to further involving myself in civics education for our local youth.
Of course, my biggest thanks must go to MP Simeon Brown, for being an incredible mentor. His continued guidance and support has been phenomenal and after shadowing him for several months, I truly appreciate all the time and effort that he devotes to our community.