Rotorua youth leader and environmentalist Katheryn Margaret Pascoe is dedicated to helping out in the community.
The Western Heights High School student won a Community Leadership Award earlier in the year and said she was "rather stunned" to have been selected.
Katheryn Margaret was recognised for her community contributions as a youth leader.
She was a founding member of the Rotorua Youth Forum, has served two years as a member of the Rotorua Youth District Council and has made submissions to both local and central government on environmental issues.
"I didn't expect the award at all, working in the community is my passion. I just think of it as my everyday life, so it's nothing major to me."
She said it all started at intermediate when she joined the school environmental council.
"Then as soon as I started high school I joined both the environmental council and school council and convinced all my friends to join with me."
Katheryn Margaret also attended the Murray Darling Basin River Authority Conference in Australia in 2009 and she said it was an amazing experience.
But even with her busy schedule the 17-year-old always makes time to be a teenager.
"I don't think it's all about politics ... I also love playing in the rain, watching movies and hanging out with friends."
When The Daily Post spoke to Katheryn Margaret last week she was celebrating her birthday and getting ready for her school ball.
After she completes high school Katheryn Margaret plans to attend university, maybe in Christchurch or Wellington, and pursue a career in youth social work.
She said she spent a lot of time helping her friends and other youth in the council so it only seemed natural to her to study towards a career in that field.
"I'll take it as it comes, but whatever happens I'll always be working with people."
Katheryn Margaret was one of 16 leaders in Rotorua who received awards for their community contributions.
The awards were held in conjunction with the Sir Peter Blake Leadership Trust, the Rotorua Energy Charitable Trust, the Rotorua Chamber of Commerce and The Daily Post.