This past year saw the launch of Ōhinga Tū replacing Youth Solutions as the name for our rangatahi work. With the change in name came a move away from an education and training emphasis towards a greater focus on Kaupapa Māori principles and Youth Development practice.
Ōhinga Tū speaks of empowered young people who are standing in their own mana with the courage to grow and to live out rich and full lives. All our rangatahi programmes reflect this emphasis.
Our partnership with MSD in the delivery of Youth Services and the Employment Preparation and Placement Programme (EP3) has continued and transitioned well to this new approach which is providing positive outcomes for rangatahi. An addition to our MSD partnerships came in the form of He Poutama Rangatahi, a programme for rangatahi that follows a close te Ao Māori design and is a continuation and expansion of our previous Pae Aronui pilot programme with Te Puni Kōkiri. He Poutama Rangatahi commenced in September 2022.
As part of the refocussing, in mid-2022, after years of bringing positive change into the lives of young people, the Alternative Education programme was concluded. Further, the Visionwest PTE (private training establishment) was put into hiatus at the end of 2022 with future plans still being considered.
Looking ahead, Ōhinga Tū is set to play a significant part in Visionwest’s response to the needs of rangatahi in West Auckland and beyond. For this reason, My Whare and other opportunities that help us respond to youth homelessness, will now sit under Ōhinga Tū.
New kaimahi (staff) have been added in all programme areas including an Employment Navigator who is working to provide support as rangatahi navigate their way into employment.
The first Ready to Rent programme, helping rangatahi who are first time renters to understand the housing and rental market, was held. This will continue to be offered at regular intervals.
On 13 April 2023 the latest cohort of He Poutama Rangatahi students – ten students in all – graduated (the course is a 10-week work-ready course for 16–24 year-olds).
The majority of Ōhinga Tū rangatahi are Māori or Pasifika – the demand for services is steady and we are finding increasing pockets of need are opening up.
Our response to youth employment and training needs
Tā mātou whakautu ki te kimi mahi rangatahi me te wananga
Youth received mentoring and employment support
First time renters completed the Ready to Rent Programme
When Shekainah looks back on her time at Ōhinga Tū she says it’s like a glue. “All the pieces you have in your life, they put them all together and provide you with everything you need to get somewhere.”