Money for youth saved from ‘hole’
Matamata- Piako District Council wants a Government grant to help channel the area’s young people in the right direction.
The Ministry of Youth Development has given $35,000 from its partnership fund to the council, which last year began putting together an action plan with associated agencies.
A staff report tabled at last Wednesday’s council meeting suggested youth providers in Matamata, Morrinsville and Te Aroha be allocated $5000 for an organised event, with the balance ($20,000) helping to pay a youth advocate.
However, Cr Neill Goodger said the council needs to consider carefully exactly what the $20,000 is being spent on.
‘‘We don’t want it to disappear into a hole.’’
Chief executive officer Don McLeod said the council needs to be very clear on what it wants the youth advocate to do.
‘‘Our history of co-ordinators is not good,’’ said Cr Mike Gribble.
He suggested the council may be better to subsidise the youth service providers.
Deputy mayor Jan Barnes successfully moved that while the $5000 is earmarked for events, the balance be subject to a business case.
The collaboration includes Te Ahurei A Rangatahi (a youth service provider in Morrinsville), Youth Empowerment Services, in Te Aroha, and Starfish Social Services, of Matamata.
Last year the group consulted 276 young people, aged between 12 and 24, across the district.
Key issues identified included getting good grades or passing exams, family, and lack of money.
Events being organised include an Op Shop Ball, Top Town competition and YES Factor (a musical showcase).
Creative: Student Candice Herbst with her almost-completed entry for this year’s Metso Art Award.