Today marked the beginning of the trades training course delivered by Wellington Institute of Technology. It's a scholarship initiative available for 3000 students from across the country, aged between 18 and 34.
Almost 100 students of Māori and Pacific Island descent were welcomed onto Waiwhetu Marae and it’s clear the local tribe know well, the benefits of such an initiative.
According to Tame Ngaheke, “Most of the men who married into this area undertook some form of trade training back in the 60s, 70s and 80s.”
In past years, trade training initiatives have proven very successful for Māori.
Nathan Maharey's late grandfather was a tradesman, a pathway he hopes to follow with a qualification in carpentry.
“My goals or aspirations is to be able to run my own company one day. I'm looking to spend a couple years here in NZ, and then hopefully shoot over to family in Australia.”
At the beginning of next month, a Whānau Ora provider will be established in the area. The students are fortunate enough to be able to put their skills to work in the building phase.
Tariana Turia says the trades training initiative is an example of what the Māori Party can achieve by being in coalition with the Govt.
Next week the work will begin for the students.