Several new initiatives are coming to Hawke's Bay to help teenagers and young people into employment.

According to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, Hawke's Bay's NEET levels (the number of 15 to 24-year-olds not in employment, education or training), were sitting at 16.5 per cent in the January-March quarter of 2019.

That puts them as the second highest in the country, second only to Gisborne.

However several initiatives are coming to the region to help tackle the issue.


The youth employment team at Hastings District Council is opening a youth employment pop-up.

The pop-up will open on Friday, September 6, with Employment Minister Willie Jackson and Youth Minister Peeni Henare attending the event.

The pop-up, which is designed to be a welcoming environment for Hastings youth, will provide a space to connect young people with the employment team to help create sustainable paths to employment.

HDC's manager for social and youth development, Dennise Elers, said the idea was to take the council's youth employment service out of the council buildings and make it more accessible and user-friendly for young people.

"Council youth employment staff will be onsite every weekday between 10am and 4pm to assist young people into employment and refer them to other agencies if need be.

"Assistance could be anything from help to sign up for a course to support towards gaining a driver's licence, getting prepared for a job interview and more."

Meanwhile, an initiative running successfully in other parts of the country is coming to Hawke's Bay, with the aim of connecting teens with work.

Teen Jobs, which was set up by 15-year-old Josh Callander last year, will begin operating in Hawke's Bay from October 1.


The website allows teenagers to set up a CV-like profile which employers can browse, rather than the more traditional method of listing jobs.

Josh said it was now the leading website for teenagers looking for work in New Zealand.

"Our website is currently live in Tauranga, Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Christchurch and we have over 2900 teenagers registered, with many job offers each week.

"We are completely free with the mission statement of providing teenagers with life skills, including experience, work ethics, responsibility and establish good work habits."

Josh said he set up the website because of the high youth unemployment rates.

"The youth unemployment rate is currently three times the adult rate despite there being numerous benefits to teenagers and for the community if teenagers work."