The Tairāwhiti is the first of four regions to launch He Poutama Rangatahi, a work ready programme designed to get young people into jobs.
"It's pretty hard at the moment because there's not that many jobs available," says job seeker Shoney Grace.
But they've been given a new opportunity through He Poutama Rangatahi, who support youth from 15-24 in finding employment.
"It's hoped this new funding for youth will encourage other organisations and trusts to get involved and provide opportunities," says Willie Jackson, Associate Minister for Māori Development.
"It's really good to know that other people are out there that are supportive of us," says job seeker Vonnese Grace.
Eastland Wood Council has come on-board through its Generation Programme, offering work ready training and a pathway into the forestry industry.
"This enables us to put together a four week forestry base camp, and that will give them the very key information about the industry. It will give them the general requirements and it will give them a whole lot of pastoral care wrapped around to make sure that they're work ready," says Prue Younger, CEO of Eastland Wood Council.
In January this year the government announced $13.275mil in funding for the pilot programme run in Te Taitokerau, Eastern Bay of Plenty, Tairāwhiti and Hawke's Bay.