Labour’s candidate for the Rimutaka electorate, Chris Hipkins, has welcomed news that the Upper Hutt City Council will receive $36,975 in central government funding for the Upper Hutt Talent Bank projects. The Ministry of Youth Development announced the funding through the Youth Development Partnership Fund this week. The Fund was established by the Labour-led government in October 2005 to support local councils develop initiatives supporting young people.
“I’m delighted the Upper Hutt City Council is taking such a positive and proactive approach to working with the young people in our community,” Chris Hipkins said.
The Talent Bank projects have two main elements, Future Dragons and Youth Ambassadors.
Future Dragons will help young people follow through innovative and entrepreneurial ideas and turn them into a reality. It will also help to build relationships between young people and the local business community.
The Youth Ambassadors project will help our young achievers develop their leadership skills and act as positive role models for their peers. It will help us to recognise and celebrate our ‘rising stars’ and build a sense of local pride amongst younger members of the community.
“It’s fantastic that our local Council are taking such a proactive approach to making Upper Hutt an exciting place for young people to live. Our young people need to know that they don’t need to move away in order to make their mark. They can be very successful right here in Upper Hutt,” Chris Hipkins said.
“I know that the Council’s own research has shown that many young people have a negative view of living in Upper Hutt. We all need to work together as a community to change that and the Council is showing excellent leadership in this area.
“At some stage many of our young people will want to go off and explore the world. Kiwis are curious creatures and we like to know what else is out there. I travelled overseas myself but I’m happy to be home. I want to make sure other young kiwis come back, and they’re far more likely to do so if they know that there are exciting opportunities for them back here.
Throughout the country sixteen projects have been approved and will collectively receive over $1.1 million in funding through the Fund.
“The Labour-led government is committed to working in partnership with local councils to ensure our young people are supported and encouraged and this week’s funding announcement is solid evidence of that,” Chris Hipkins said.