Pathways Project
Rotorua District

Pathways Project — Rotorua District

  • The Pathways Project began in July 2003 and is jointly funded by the Mayors Taskforce for Jobs, Work and Income and the Rotorua District Council. It is a youth employment initiative that focuses primarily on the region's 15-17 year olds.


  • To establish practical steps towards improving Rotorua's poor performance with 15 to 17 year olds in transition.

    The Pathways Project aims to find solutions to industry and community concerns regarding education, training and employment for young people.

    There are two overriding objectives - firstly to plan and establish new pathways within specific sectors - Agriculture, Tourism, Retail and Engineering. Secondly to undertake a gap analysis of the services and interventions currently missing for young people leaving school and seeking vocational employment.


  • Stage One evaluated the pathways into employment currently available to young people in three of those sectors, Agriculture, Retail and Tourism.
    These sectors were chosen because they are key indicators for the local economy and have a history of employing youth. At this stage strong networks were established within the local community, educational institutions, industry and government departments.

    Stage TwoImplementation. At this stage Engineering was added to the vocational sectors. Qualitative research was carried out in all sectors, followed by practical steps and on going action plans.


  • The Mayors Taskforce for Jobs has made an initial contribution of $50,000.
    The project also received financial support from the Rotorua District Council, WINZ and local Iwi.


  • Stage One (six months) of the project entailed evaluating pathways into employment currently available to young people in the agriculture, retail and tourism sectors. These sectors were chosen because they are key indicators for the local economy and have a history of employing youth. A project officer established networks between education, training, government and relevant industry groups that are connected with youth in transition. A Gap Analysis of the systems and services available locally to assist young school leavers was undertaken.

  • Stage Two (six months). From June 2004 to December 2004 the project focused on five sectors - Agriculture, Engineering, Construction, Tourism and Health.


  • Working together with the Te Arawa Federation of Maori Authorities (FOMA) Agricultural Development Group, a feasibility study and a business plan were prepared for the project by a local consultancy firm and these two documents were launched in October and distributed to local iwi for consultation, approval and financial commitment. By December, ten Iwi Trust Farms had agreed to participate in the proposed Cadetship by putting forward funding for 14 placements. A project manager and staff were sought, to begin employment in 2005 and an Independent Trust Fund was established.

    It was found that a barrier to successful employment for young Maori within the farming sector was isolation. Many came from a large whanau home environment and were less likely to own a car or have access to reliable transport. Group employment options provided the solution and 3 or 4 school leavers can now be offered group scholarships.

    Construction and Engineering

  • Networks have been established within these two sectors, and work has been done to encourage industry to become involved in youth employment opportunities. Both networks have agreed to take part in the Rotorua Careers Expo in May 2005. Curriculum alignment opportunities have been implemented between local high schools and Waiariki Institute of Technology.


  • Presentations have been given to all senior students tourism classes in Rotorua. Between September and November 2004 seventeen cadetship interviews took place and 12 students were offered and accepted cadetships.

    From December onwards 7 students completed Stage One of the Pilot and were employed over the high season; 4 are now permanently employed in full time jobs with excellent career prospects; 3 work over the holidays then returned to school.

    All were offered part-time work for 2005. Two of the companies employing younger cadets are considering offering them apprenticeships in the 2005 year.

    'having this opportunity to be a Pathways Cadet has confirmed for me that this is definitely the niche I want to get into when I leave school. Its been great to learn in an adult environment."
    Megan, Pathways Cadetship at Event Impressions"

    "Initially Wallace seemed so nervous……..with encouragement from staff we watched him develop into the role and gain the confidence we needed.
    We have offered him full time work over the holiday season and beyond and he's doing a great job."
    Ken, Operations Manager.
    (Wallace has been accepted at Sir George Seymour College of Tourism management for July 2005)


  • Letters of introduction sent out to key stake holders in December 2004 followed by interviews to gauge job opportunities for young people wanting to enter the health sector. A Gap Analysis is planned to examine the present pathways between school, training and sustainable employment for the sector.

    A Health Network will be developed to give key organisations support and guidance.


  • To date the Project Officer was unable to achieve an output for this sector. There were a number of issues blocking progress e.g. local industry groups are cautious about youth employment initiatives. Further work is required to achieve links between NZCEA courses offered at high schools and opportunities in the retail sector for both after school and flexible employment.

    Local IWI
    Rotorua District Council
    WINZ - Bay of Plenty Region
    NZ Trade & Enterprise

    Annie Ross
    Rotorua District Council

  • tindf2.gif - 2525 Bytes

    003part.gif - 1422 Bytes

    rdc-logo.gif - 3456 Bytes
    Rotorua District Council

    winz.gif - 2825 Bytes

    WINZ - Bay of Plenty Region

    nzte-logo.gif - 3698 Bytes
    NZ Trade & Enterprise

    003mayor.gif - 1291 Bytes

    rotorua-kevinwinter.jpg - 5926 Bytes

    Kevin Winter, Mayor of Rotorua

    003links.gif - 1196 Bytes

    Project Contacts

    Annie Ross
    Rotorua District Council
    Ph: 07) 873 8199
    0274 691 933