Thursday, April 18, 2024

Predator Free apprenticeships grow

The expansion of a predator free apprenticeship programme is an opportunity for more people to kick-start a conservation career, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan said today.

“The Predator Free Apprenticeship Programme is focused on increasing the number of skilled predator control operators in New Zealand through a two-year training programme,” the Minister said.

“The Trust has already placed 48 apprentices with various host organisations around the country since the scheme started late last year following an investment of $4.5 million through the Government’s Jobs for Nature programme.”

A further $2.35 million will mean another 25 people who may either be looking for work or a fresh start due to the impact of COVID 19 now have the opportunity to receive the same on-the-job and formal training, she said.

“Participants complete the NZQA Certificate in Pest Operations (Level 3) and a number of other industry qualifications, and learn directly from experienced pest control specialists during their apprenticeship. They also provide local on-the-ground support to conservation community groups, landowners, and other projects,” Ms Allan said.

“If we are going to achieve our ambitious goal of creating a predator free New Zealand by 2050 and see the regeneration of our native bird and plant life it is vital we grow a workforce armed with the skills required to become future environmental leaders.

“This project will not only do that but will also deliver social and economic benefits to the wider community.”

Support staff will be employed to coordinate the programme, the Minister said.

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