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More than 60 training and educational support workers from throughout the Tai Tokerau region came together for a one-day hui at NorthTec’s Apprentice restaurant.
Jointly organised by NorthTec and QRC Tai Tokerau Resort College, the event was the first opportunity for those who provide pastoral care to students and clients to meet as a group.
Those attending represented schools, tertiary providers, iwi services, private training establishments, social agencies and organisations involved in the care and support of students and clients of any age.
Kirsten James, NorthTec’s Group Manager Student Services, said the event was the first of its type and gave pastoral support workers from various agencies and providers the chance to network and share ideas.
She said: “This was an opportunity for us to create a support system for people working within pastoral care roles. By coming together, we will be able to work more collaboratively and have a better understanding of how to navigate the networks of support services available. Our work is all about putting students and clients at the centre of what we do, and navigating the best pathway and support for them.”
Guest speaker Jo Littin, Regional Labour Market Advisor for the Ministry of Social Development, gave an overview of the KODE (Kaikohe Opportunities, Dreams and Experiences) programme and the learnings gained from it. The four-week pre-employment programme requires intense support for participants.
Huhana Lyndon, General Manager of Te Matarau Education Trust, facilitated a panel discussion with Briarley Birch, from Te Ora Hou in Whangarei, Helen Cossey, from NorthTec’s Kaitaia campus, and Shade Pihema, from the mid-North based He Iwi Kotahi Tatou Trust. The panel covered a range of topics, from knowledge and experience of support networks available, to the challenges and successes of working to support people.
The second guest speaker, Isopo Samu from Tokotoko Solutions, talked about the importance of self-care for people in jobs where they are responsible for looking after others.
Kelly Kahukiwa, Operations Manager from QRC Tai Tokerau Resort College, said: “This was a get-together of hearty people, who all have a common interest in uplifting our future Tai Tokerau leaders of tomorrow to be successful in their endeavours.”
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