More than 800 jobseekers will be supported on pathways into employment, education and training through funding into the Māori Trades and Training Fund (MTTF) and He Poutama Rangatahi projects, Minister for Social Development and Employment, Carmel Sepuloni announced today.
“With unemployment falling to 4%, we know the labour market has held up better than expected. This is a reflection of the suite of Government measures and interventions we’ve put in place to secure our economic recovery from COVID-19,” Minister Sepuloni said.
“The Government is continuing to support that recovery by delivering more opportunities for people to get into meaningful employment, education and training and to ensure it is equitable.
“The Māori Trades and Training Fund (MTTF) will support over 500 Māori job seekers into employment and training opportunities, with $18.576 million committed to a range of new and existing projects.
“There are many elements to MTTF that makes it unique and successful. It not only supports Māori into jobs, but it supports businesses to be competitive, building their resiliency to grow and take on more apprentices.”
The Minister said an integral part of MTTF was the wrap-around support that is offered from a Te Ao Māori world view.
“That’s something that is not common across many employment programmes, but as we look to support more Māori into sustainable employment, education and training, it must be front of mind for employers and the workforce, as it is for Government,” she said.
“One example is the Empowering Māori in Trades project being run by Mana Within Ltd in Auckland. This will see 50 participants from West and South Auckland get the chance to train for and be placed in construction sector jobs, where the skills are in short supply in the current labour market.
“While we’re on a positive trajectory, this latest tranche of investment will help to fill the demand for skilled workers, improve employment, social and whānau outcomes, and contribute to the workforce that is helping build the Government’s 18,000 Kainga Ora homes.”
In addition, Government is also investing $5.6 million to help over 300 rangatahi overcome barriers to employment, education and training through further funding into He Poutama Rangatahi (HPR).
“He Poutama Rangatahi has shown early success, engaging more than 6,000 at-risk rangatahi in communities across regional Aotearoa, including more than 2,500 who have been supported into employment, education and training.”
“We want rangatahi to have the skills they need to thrive, but we also know that our approach must recognise the importance of individualised and ongoing support for those most at risk of long-term employment.
“That’s why we’ve expanded HPR to urban areas, where the largest numbers of rangatahi not in employment, education or training live.
“HPR funding will provide crucial pastoral care and pre-employment training so that our rangatahi can develop work-ready skills and tools to engage in meaningful opportunities that will see them work and thrive in their local communities.
“There are now 63,000 more people in jobs since September 2020 and more people came off the benefit in the June quarter, with over 31,000 entering paid work. This shows that while we’re on the right trajectory, we must keep going.
“Māori Trades and Training and He Poutama Rangatahi are only one part of our Government’s solution to supporting people into employment, education and training. They sit alongside other initiatives like Mana in Mahi, Jobs for Nature, and Apprenticeship Boost, and offer exciting opportunities through wrap-around and bespoke support and pastoral care,” Ms Sepuloni said.
Funding for Māori Trades and Training and He Poutama Rangatahi is now administered by the Ministry of Social Development. Projects have previously been funded by both the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Provincial Growth Fund.