Ōmokoroa billboard design revealed to excited students
The Ōmokoroa billboard has a fresh new look, and most importantly a tohutō (macron), thanks to Ōmokoroa Point School’s Room 10.
The billboard, at the State Highway 2 and Ōmokoroa intersection, captures the wonders of Ōmokoroa according to the students such as, the beach, skatepark, native birds, Pōhutukawa trees, the playground, whānau/family, cycle tracks, boardwalks, and the wharf (fishing and jumping off).
None of which would have been possible if it wasn’t for the students’ Operation Tohutō, a campaign to add a tohutō to the O of Ōmokoroa on all the town’s signage.
Council CEO John Holyoake, after hearing their presentation to Western Bay of Plenty Councillors in September, invited the students to continue to lead their community initiative by co-designing the updated look.
After working with Room 10 to illustrate their ideas of what Ōmokoroa means to them, Western Bay Mayor James Denyer revealed the final design to excited students this week.
School Principal Sandra Portegys is incredibly proud of the students and knows that they will remember this process whenever they pass the billboard at the entrance of Ōmokoroa Road for years to come.
“I'd like to thank the Western Bay of Plenty District Council for hearing the children's case. This shows our young people that they have a voice and if they do things the right way, they can have a positive impact on their community. I hope the students take this learning into their future.”
Room 10’s teacher Deirdre Duggan could not agree more. “What an experience! One the students will never forget!”
“Having the support of Council in this process to help guide our project to a success has been really appreciated. A chance for real life learning in social action, which will change our community for ever.
“Our mahi will continue next year as we work alongside the local community to continue to change our place name to include the tohutō and challenge other schools to do the same. Changing Aotearoa one tohutō at a time."
Room 10 student Sofia was excited she could contribute to the design. “I really like the design and it is in my favourite colour, purple. It shows everything we like and what activities we can do in Ōmokoroa.”
Fellow student Rebecca agreed saying, “The design connects to what we love.”
Western Bay Mayor James Denyer says we really appreciate Room 10’s mahi and their journey, from researching and respecting the correct use of Reo, presenting Operation Tohutō to Western Bay of Plenty Councillors through to designing the billboard.
“They have shown their community, their voice can lead to change. They can look proudly at the billboard and know they have made a difference.”
The new billboard design is now standing proudly on the corner of State Highway 2 and Ōmokoroa Road.