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Booktown talk one in a million

Te Kahukura Boynton wants to be a millionaire by 2025 – and she’s already 10 per cent of the way there.

Boynton – the founder of an online platform called The Maori Millionaire – shared some of her financial insights with Kuranui College students last week as part of the Featherston Young Readers Programme.

Te Kahukura is on a mission to empower Maori to become financially independent because she understands first-hand that not having access to money causes health issues, education barriers, and contributes to mental health problems.

The platform – which has tips and advice about personal finance, investing, and self-development – currently has over 25,000 subscribers.

“Being young is a perfect time to learn about money as, generally speaking, we don’t have the same responsibilities that adults do,” Boynton said.

Her presentation covered her financial journey, and tips about building wealth and the many avenues young people can access to increase their income.

Boynton is a self-proclaimed book nerd and recounted how, after reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad at age eight, promptly phoned her nan to ask whether she was maximising her account for compound interest.

She started her first business in year 10 and, although it only lasted a week, the experience taught her many valuable skills for her next venture, Maori Millionaire.

“We can make mistakes as young people, learn from them and then prevent the bigger mistakes happening as adults,” she said.

The Kuranui students responded positively to Te Kahukura’s presentation.

“I’ve done a couple of businesses that haven’t gone well but it’s good to know that it can be successful,” said one.

Another student, Lucas, said he had already set up a sports apparel website through Shopify, something he figured out how to do on TikTok.

A third student commented it was “cool getting insight into what it would be like to have a business while at Uni – I didn’t know it was something you could do”.

“Being able to hear the first-hand experience, and the fact that she’s 19 and her net worth is what it is was amazing,” they said.

Kuranui College commerce teacher Hine Toko Isaac said that financial literacy is one of the most important things students can learn at school.

“Getting the conversations started is so important – lots of students don’t have those conversations at home as some don’t have parents who have the financial literacy themselves,” Isaac said.

Enterprise teacher Philip Kempthorne added, “What we struggle with as teachers is making sure every student gets a dose of financial literacy, as it’s not one of your traditional subjects.”

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