Talent RISE New Zealand Announces He Poutama Rangatahi Funding

Talent RISE New Zealand has today announced that it has received funding from the New Zealand Government’s He Poutama Rangatahi initiative. Talent RISE will receive funding of $296,000 NZD to help rangatahi (young people) overcome barriers to employment and training through work-readiness training and job opportunities. Funding will enable Talent RISE to assist and support rangatahi who are NEET (not in employment, education, or training).

This funding will impact 45 young people over two years, who will complete six-week strengths-based work readiness programme, which includes topics such as health and wellbeing, financial literacy, personal grooming, CV and interview preparation, workplace ethics, self and time management, and effective communication. Participants will have access to noho marae (marae based learning), motivational speakers, skills training, and volunteer experience. After graduating, each rangatahi will receive ongoing extensive pastoral support whilst transitioning into employment or further training.

Rangatahi in Wellington and their whānau (family) will benefit from this programme, which will help increase community engagement, financial wellbeing, and employment skills. The wider community will benefit from reduced rates of unemployment and benefit dependency. Our kaupapa (purpose) is to empower rangatahi to reach their full potential.

Talent and Talent RISE Founder and Chairman Richard Earl said that the He Poutama Rangatahi investment will have a significant impact on the charity’s young people, and the broader community. “The global youth unemployment crisis is reaching unprecedented levels and the long term impacts could be devastating, this coupled with the disconnection, and lack of hope being felt by young people could lead to damaging consequences.This generous funding couldn’t come at a better time for our young people and will enable them to upskill in order to re-enter the job market in this challenging time.”

Gideon Stevens, a Talent RISE graduate, who works at Rabobank as a Banking Consultant reflected on what the program has done for him. “Talent RISE absolutely changed my life for the better and, to be honest, they clearly did it on a shoestring budget. Hearing about this funding made me feel a deep compassion for others. I can only imagine how much impact it’s going to have on the young people that RISE help.”

Bianca Jones, Talent Country Manager New Zealand, said the funding would be used to enhance the programme. “Over the past two years, we have supported over 40 rangatahi into jobs with a focus on roles with meaningful career pathways. Research has shown that when our rangatahi are out of work or training, they drift and become disengaged and unmotivated. I’m very passionate about young people, and in particular, those who are NEET. We know that employment and education changes people’s lives.”

The Minister of Social Development and Employment New Zealand, Hon Carmel Sepuloni, stated that RISE will provide significant benefits to young people. “Rangatahi graduating from these programmes will emerge with more interpersonal skills, strengthened resilience, improved health and wellbeing practices and a better sense of their cultural identity. Participants and their whānau will benefit from these programmes, which help increase social participation, financial wellbeing and employment skills.”

Mark Nielsen, Talent Global CEO, said the funding would help facilitate life-changing opportunities. “Talent RISE is the heart of Talent, and it’s something that we really believe in and feel so passionately about. We are ecstatic about this funding and the generous contribution from the New Zealand Government He Poutama Rangatahi initiative which will support our mission to impact the lives of young people. RISE has evolved to meet the requirements of the world we now live in. This funding will have a monumental effect on the rangatahi our RISE New Zealand team work with.” 

To date, Talent RISE has engaged more than 3,000 young people through workshops and mentoring and has successfully placed over 350 into meaningful employment. Our Talent RISE whakatauki is: Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi, enagri he toa takatini! Success is not that of one, but that of a collective.