Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau has announced Provincial Growth Funding to ensure work opportunities in Turangi and Whanganui, through its skills and employment programme, Te Ara Mahi.
A fund of $500,000 will go to Rafting NZ in Turangi for a 16-week river guide training course to train 20 new river guides for its Tongariro river rafting business.
"The course will have a strong focus on environmental and cultural values and addresses a shortage of skilled guides, especially Māori who have strong links to local iwi Tuwharetoa," Mr Tabuteau said in a press release.
"The course not only gives graduates an internationally recognised qualification, but they will also be supported to work within the river rafting industry,” he added.
Meanwhile $94,000 is made available for a Whanganui-based “work ready passport” project, which will be an employer-led initiative to enable young people to have the right skills and attitude to start work through a “work ready passport”.
"The work ready passport initiative will roll out to local secondary schools, supporting up to 300 young people to develop key skills such as communication, managing money, life skills and understanding health and safety at work,” Mr Tabuteau said regarding the Whanganui project.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary said that these funding announcements were part of the PGF’s ethos of building communities and creating economic activity. It also testifies to New Zealand First’s commitment in supporting our provincial towns and cities.
"Supporting provincial communities to work together, boost their economic growth, and improve the social outcomes of local people, is what the PGF is all about," Tabuteau said.