Ayouth employment initiative has launched in Waikato with its inaugural intake of students.
Twenty-three young people began the Limited Service Volunteers (LSV) Graduate Programme at the end of May, run by leadership training organisation Future Leaders with support from the Ministry of Social Development.
The programme is designed to provide a support system for graduate students of the LSV Course, a military-style work preparation course run by the New Zealand Defence Force.
Future Leaders founder and head instructor Jethro Gilbert says he identified a need for further mentorship after the LSV Course, to ensure participants had the support necessary to transition successfully into the workforce.
Both the LSV Course and the follow-up Graduate Programme are free to jobseekers aged 18-24 years, and aim to equip young people with the skills, mind-set and motivation needed to succeed in the workplace or tertiary study.
The course is a six-week residential camp which uses military training techniques to build foundation skills like self-discipline and resilience. The Graduate Programme is a four-week daily course with a focus on leadership, personal development and work-readiness, and includes helping the graduates to source employment opportunities.
The first phase of the LSV Graduate Programme is followed by six months of ongoing mentoring from the instructors in the Future Leaders team.
Since its inception in 2014, the LSV Graduate Programme has worked with more than 450 young people in the Wellington region, and consistently sees 80 percent of participants gain long-term employment.