In 2016 Pita Taufatofua broke the internet as the shirtless Tongan flag bearer at the Rio
Olympic games, but what most people don’t know is that the dual-sport Olympian has a
long history of helping other young people achieve their dreams. Now he’s helping Brisbane
Youth Service to break a Guinness World Record to raise awareness of youth homelessness,
a cause very close to his heart.
“Breaking a Guinness World Record has always been on my bucket list, and now I have the
chance to tick this one off with Brisbane Youth Service,” said Pita.
“Not everyone in our community is aware that children as young as 12 are homeless, either
sleeping rough or couch surfing, and facing all the dangers that these situations present.
“If doing 2 mins of Burpees with 1,500 other people can help to end youth homelessness,
I’m in,” said Pita.
Since he was 18, Pita has worked as a youth worker in Brisbane supporting vulnerable
children and young people. Pita has worked with Brisbane Youth Service for the last six
years in supported accommodation, delivering programs that enable young people to break
the cycle of homelessness and gain independence.
“Brisbane Youth Service gives young people a safe place, possibly the first safe place they’ve
“Brisbane Youth Service programs empower young people with the knowledge, skills and
resources to create a better life for themselves.”
“They implement programs that have been honed over many years to help young people
move out of homelessness and break that cycle,” said Pita.
Despite becoming a dual-sport Olympian and taking the internet by storm, Pita still works at
Brisbane Youth Service and jumped at the chance to break a Guinness World Record with
Burpees for BYS.
Pita’s sporting achievements are enough to inspire anyone, and he’s hoping that 1,500
people will join him and Brisbane Youth Service on 6 April 2019 to make history and raise
awareness of youth homelessness at the same time.
Pita Taufatofua is now an internationally recognised sportsperson with two Olympic games
under his belt in different sports, a feat only achieved by a small few. Pita will shortly
announce yet another sport he is hoping to qualify in at Olympic level, this time in Tokyo in
2020. What that sport will be is anyone’s guess, but it’s gaining some serious interest from
international sports media. If successful in competing in three Olympics in three different
sports he will be the first person to ever complete the triple.
Among this hype and the long hours of training, Pita has continued to work with vulnerable
young people, empowering them to reach their life goals.
Brisbane Youth Service has provided “New Futures for Young People” since 1977, helping
BYS to break this Guinness World Record will raise awareness of the issues affecting
vulnerable and homeless young people aged 12-25.
Interview and photos are available by request with CEO Annemaree Callendar, Pita Taufatofua
and Founder of Burpees for BYS Dave the Trainer.
Where: Southern Districts Basketball Centre, 56 Zahel St, Carina Hosted by Brisbane Bullets and
Southern Districts Basketball Association
When: Saturday 6th April 2019, 8.00am for 8.30am start
The Record: The record is currently 1,455 participants set by Dubai Police in the United Arab
Who will be there: Founder of Burpees for BYS Dave the Trainer, Pita Taufatofua and an army of
participants and volunteers to help raise awareness of youth homelessness
How to register: People can register at this link, registration costs $10 per person or $50 for a team
of 10 (discounts are available for large groups)
How many Burpees you need to do: 1,500 people performing burpees together for 2 minutes to
Other ways to help: People can also help by making a donation to BYS and spreading the word
about their participation by liking, sharing and following BYS and tagging their posts with
#burpeesforbys #endyouthhomelessness #guinnessworldrecord #countmein #registered
#qyw19 #unlimited #QldYouth
Communications and Marketing Coordinator
Brisbane Youth Service
firstname.lastname@example.org or 0408 011 644