Preparing Kaikohe youth for forestry jobs

Employment Minister Willie Jackson announced today government support to set Kaikohe unemployed youth on a pathway to careers in forestry through He Poutama Rangatahi.

“Tackling youth unemployment, and helping young people who are not in education or training into work is a priority for this Government, especially amongst Māori and Pasifika,” Willie Jackson said.

“However, communities are best placed to develop their own solutions, and we will support them along the way.

“Earlier this year, I announced $13.27 million under He Poutama Rangatahi to fund community-led pilot projects in four regions with entrenched unemployment: Te Tai Tokerau, Eastern Bay of Plenty, Tairāwhiti and Hawkes Bay.

The $353,000 allocated to the Northland College Pine Project aims to support youth currently not in education, employment and training into sustainable work in forestry. This will be done through a combination of theory, training and practical work experience on the Northland College forest site.

“Last week I also announced support for the Eastland Wood Council’s ‘Generation Programme’ in Tairāwhiti that will offer industry-backed training and work experience pathways in forestry,” Willie Jackson said.

“Forestry is one of the industries that are set for growth over the next few years. Getting their rangatahi work-ready will help these communities take advantage of the Government’s increased regional investments.

“I commend them for taking the initiative and will be following their progress closely.

“These projects are just the first steps, however. More He Poutama Rangatahi initiatives will be announced in the coming months in the target regions,” Willie Jackson said.