The Youth team

Jaz Burke

National Youth Coordinator

Hi! I am Jaz, the National Youth coordinator! I could throw frisbees before I could walk and have painted myself entirely blue twice and orange once… I love drama, painting and spontaneous sing alongs…. though don’t listen too closely as I am a little out of tune! I once took an adventure to Texas where I worked at a summer camp for children with special needs. This meant I got have some amazing experiences like teaching photography to children who were blind, dressing up in a different costume each day and singing a LOT of annoying songs! I loved it so much I went back again… Ever since then I have been passionate about working with young people to help them see their strengths and talents – AND to be proud of the things that make them different. I am so excited to be working with the Tourette’s Association!

Analise Twemlow

Youth Ambassador

Hey everyone

I’m really looking forward to getting to be an ambassador for all of us who have Tourette’s. So many people have the wrong idea about what Tourette’s is and I want to change that.

I’d never heard of Tourette’s until I was diagnosed. My tics didn’t really bother me but other people used to find them annoying. But it never stopped me from doing things.

I’ve always loved to dance and sing and now that I’m older I like to hang out with my friends at the mall and on my phone. I also love fashion, acting and swimming.

Over the past few years I’ve spoken a lot about living with Tourette’s, like on tv and at this really cool event called TEDx Christchurch.

My dream is to be a public speaker and to travel the world meeting and inspiring other young people with Tourette’s to tic loud and tic proud.

Ethan Downey-Parish

Youth Ambassador

Hey guys, I’m Ethan. I’m 18 and I live in Auckland. Music is a big passion of mine. I write songs with a good friend of mine. I listen to a range of different music genres and enjoy going to concerts whenever I can.

The insturments that I play are guitar, drums, bass and I sing as well. I enjoy playing and watching Football. The teams that I support are Liverpool FC and Barcelona FC. I also enjoy playing video games. I was diagnosed with TS back in 2009 when I was Year 8 at intermediate school.

I am not at high school anymore as I graduated in 2014. I am currently at university studying audio engineering as it is something that I really enjoy.

NEED SOMEONE TO TALK TO? 

Ethan, pictured right, is a keen musician and is pursuing a career in the music industry.

Ethan, pictured right, is a keen musician and is pursuing a career in the music industry.

Have you ever noticed that some days seem to be a whole lot worse than others? And sometimes there doesn’t even really seem to be a reason why?

Well that’s totally normal – loads of people feel exactly the same way.

If that’s happening to you there are heaps of ways to try to deal with it.

Everybody needs someone to talk to and parents, friends, a friend’s parent or even a teacher are a great place to start.

But sometimes it can be easier to talk over the phone to a person that you’ve never met.

If there is something going on that you don’t think you can talk to a parent or a teacher about, then below is a list of organisations that have people who are specially trained to help young people.

And if you don’t feel like talking, you can visit the SPARX website, send an email or text the guys at Youthline.

Never be afraid to ask for help – it always feels much better afterwards when you share your thoughts or feelings with someone you trust.

Get online or on your phone and call these guys below:

SPARX.org.nz – an online e-therapy tool provided by the University of Auckland that helps young people learn skills to deal with feeling down, depressed or stressed

Youthline – 0800 376 633, free text 234 or email talk@youthline.co.nz

thelowdown.co.nz – or email team@thelowdown.co.nz or free text 5626

What’s Up– 0800 942 8787 (for 5–18 year olds; 1 pm to 11 pm)

Kidsline– 0800 54 37 54 (0800 kidsline) aimed at children up to 14 years of age; 4pm to 6pm weekdays