Nominations for the annual OneChance Youth Awards are being called for as a group of students begin organising the event.

Eleven students from the city's five main high schools are organising the awards which are open to ages 15 to 24 and have 12 categories.

One of the organisers Ngakohu Walker, a student from Rotorua Boys' High School, said the third annual awards were all about celebrating youth.

"There's a lot of good stuff happening out in the community that's not getting recognised so we want to celebrate youth."

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Rotorua Girls' High School student Ashly Atchico said the theme of the evening was Express Your Culture.

She said it was important to celebrate youth to encourage them to keep pursuing goals.

She said making entry to the event free also made it accessible and possible for all to celebrate youth.

Rotorua Girls' High School student Shay Tahano said the evening would feature a motivational speaker and entertainment from students.

The speaker is Tauranga man Tony Christiansen who lost both of his legs in an accident at age 9.

Shay said it was important to celebrate youth because they were a big part of the community and contributed to it.

"It's a way for people to express their culture and for the people of Rotorua to come together to celebrate rangatahi."

OneChance Youth project chief enthusiast Alan Solomon said the awards were special because the organising group represented a snapshot of the young population.

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"It's the diversity of the group, the dynamic of having all the school represented."

Solomon teased there would be a big announcement made at the awards.

A total of $10,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded at the event.

The 12 award categories are: Most outstanding youth performance group, most outstanding youth performer, most amazing youth visual artist, most outstanding sports team, most outstanding sports athlete, most outstanding youth employee, most outstanding community youth ambassador, youth services icon award, Most awesome youth of the year, youth cultural leader of the year, people's choice award and supreme youth leader of the year.

The details

What

: OneChance Youth Awards

When

: May 26, doors open 4.30pm

Where

: Energy Events Centre

Cost

: Free, ticket limit of four

Nominations

: To nominate someone go to the website. Nominations close April 19.

Details

: Visit

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