Funding of over $1.2 million towards helping Northland’s youth into sustainable employment has been welcomed by the
regional economic development agency, Northland Inc.
Under He Poutama Rangatahi, a pilot youth initiative of the Provincial Growth Fund, the Whangarei Youth Space’s START
initiative was allocated $880,000 over three years.
The programme supports young people through a 24-month intensive programme to transition them into work.
The programme is underpinned by one-on-one mentoring and pastoral care by kaimahi/mentors who will equip them with the
skills needed to be work-ready.
A further $400,000 will be invested in the South Hokianga-based Eco Toa programme. Eco Toa is a five-month intensive
programme for South Hokianga and Kaikohe youth who are not in employment, education or training (NEET).
The programme will train them in pest control, weed eradication, riparian planting and forestry silviculture.
“Supporting the development and roll-out of He Poutama Rangatahi is a key programme within the Tai Tokerau Northland
Economic Action Plan, which brings into focus a group of projects and programmes that together are contributing to the
transformation of Northland’s economy,” said Jude Thompson, Portfolio Manager, Tai Tokerau Northland Economic Action
“This funding will help achieve some great outcomes for our rangatahi.
“A range of diverse projects such as these are vital for our diverse community as one size will not fit all. Programmes
like the Whangarei Youth Space START are important as they provide that tailored support to prepare our rangatahi for a
better future,” she said.
“Both projects are examples of place-based initiatives where communities have identified their needs but required a
helping hand to achieve their goals - Tai Tokerau solutions for Tai Tokerau challenges.”