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Source: NorthTec

From left: Eru Lyndon (Ministry of Social Development), Steven Smith (NorthChamber), Wayne Jackson (NorthTec), Andrea Ross (People Potential), Lisa Halvorson (Work Ready).

The Tai Tokerau Skills Centre Plus – Te Rua o Pūkenga was launched yesterday at NorthTec’s new city centre learning hub in Whangārei.
Around 60 people gathered at the building in Bank Street to celebrate the beginning of a new initiative which has been established as a partnership with NorthChamber, Work Ready, and People Potential, and is also supported by the Ministry of Social Development (MSD).
The Tai Tokerau Skills Centre Plus – Te Rua o Pūkenga has been developed as a response to the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and designed to assist people who are looking for work. Whether it’s a comprehensive skills assessment, a need to upskill or retrain or looking to maximise future opportunities for work, the team at Tai Tokerau Skills Centre Plus can help.
Her Worship the Mayor of Whangārei, Sheryl Mai, spoke to the group about the importance of Northland businesses collaborating to help Northlanders post-Covid. She said: “This is exactly what our region needs right now to respond to some of the desperation that people will be feeling through loss of employment. Northland industries are working together to provide people with the skills needed to make sure that post-Covid, we seize every opportunity to make Tai Tokerau great.”
NorthTec’s Acting Chief Executive, Wayne Jackson, said: “This is an important milestone for NorthTec as it is part of our decentralisation of our learning services. The current vision for the Tai Tokerau Skills Centre Plus – Te Rua o Pūkenga is providing a key portal, a place where people seeking employment and skills can come for a one-stop-shop access to the services they need.
“The great thing is this can be delivered to everyone, where ever they are in our region, thanks to our new website. There is no reason why we couldn’t duplicate this model in other places, and that will deliver on our mission of providing better lives through education.”
Representatives from a number of local organisations, including Youth Space and Tai Tokerau Trades Training attended along with NorthTec Board members, Chair Ripeka Evans, Deputy Chair Murray Bain and Matt Keane.
The Tai Tokerau Skills Centre Plus – Te Rua o Pūkenga will be housed on the ground floor of the building at 38 Bank Street, while the two upper storeys will be used as a digital learning centre for NorthTec students.