Money for youth saved from ‘hole’

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By STEVE ED­WARDS

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.

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