Budget 2022: Supporting our young people to thrive

$15 million boost over four years for youth development services including:

  • $2.5 million annually to support increased access to youth development services for up to an additional 6,800 young people
  • $1 million annually in a pilot initiative supporting full-time equivalent youth workers to deliver increased contact time with at least 360 young people per year to address more complex and urgent needs
  • $0.2 million annually to build a cycle of youth development evidence, including research and evaluation on what works for cohorts of young people, including those from marginalised communities, such as rangatahi Māori, Pacific, rainbow and disabled young people.

Young people in Aotearoa New Zealand will be better supported with increased investment from Budget 2022, Minister Priyanca Radhakrishnan announced today during an event to celebrate Youth Week 2022.

“By investing in our youth development services, we’re able to make a long-term difference for our young people, by increasing their capability and resilience through programmes that develop the skills and connections needed to take part in society. These services will receive a $15 million boost over four years in this year’s Budget,” Priyanca Radhakrishnan said.

“The impact is evident from the feedback we receive from young people and youth providers. Through these programmes, young people have reported increased self-confidence, development of work-ready skills, improved preparedness for the future work environment and strengthened positive connections.

“This funding boost reinforces the Government’s commitment to making Aotearoa New Zealand the best place in the world for children and young people.

“Outside of COVID-19 response specific funding, this is the most significant increase that services funded by the Ministry of Youth Development have seen in 20 years.

“I have heard stories from young people who have told me about the deeply positive impact of youth workers investing time and effort in supporting them, and how that experience was often the crucial turning point in their lives that enabled them to fully back themselves and, in turn, help others,” Priyanca Radhakrishnan said.

This new investment represents a 40 per cent funding increase to support MYD-funded services and will offer more certainty and stability for providers to be able to deliver high quality youth development services to young people. At least 7,160 young people will benefit from this new investment annually.