The Social Sector Trials, a joint initiative of the Ministries of Social Development, Health, Education, Justice and the New Zealand Police have been established to improve social sector efficiencies and shift decision making for funding services away from the government to be managed at one single point in the community.
Carl Crafar, Director of the Social Sector Trials, said that the two year trial is recognition that families and communities can work together to help ensure that Kaikohe’s young people are able to live full and independent lives, making the most of opportunities available to them.
Te Pae Aronga Taitamariki was selected because of the combined local, cultural and clinical expertise of its three joint venture partners Ngāpuhi Iwi Social Services, Otangarei Trust, and Youth Horizons.
Wendy Fergusson, a local resident from Omapere, joins Te Pae Aronga Taitamariki in the role of Project Manager – Kaikohe Social Sector Trials for the set-up phase. Wendy will work out of the Ngāpuhi Iwi Social Service offices in Kaikohe. The focus of the role is to assess the needs of the community’s youth where there are high levels of truancy, alcohol and drug dependency, youth offending and so on. Once the needs are assessed, through the guidance of a local community liaison group, community resources are identified and funding is directed to these activities.