In a move to further invest in regional economic development, the New Zealand Government announced funding of three billion dollars known as the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF).
The PGF aims to support our regions, seeking to ensure that people living all over New Zealand can reach their full potential by helping build a regional economy that is sustainable, inclusive and productive. The scheme focusses on upskilling Māori and Pasifika and/or those that have been displaced due to the impacts of Covid-19 in the regions. The scheme allows us to provide an extra level of pastoral care and training support for our apprentices. It is especially crucial for the support of regional apprenticeships because of the impact Covid-19 had on regional economies and employment.
In 2020, Cook Brothers were proud to be named as one of five institutions in construction to be offered funding under this scheme. Funding provided to Cook Brothers is part of a $12million package for businesses operating in the Government's Regional Apprenticeship Initiative, aiming to create 300 apprenticeships nationwide.
Cook Brothers love to see our employees thrive. Since our founding fifteen years ago, we have always had a great history of training and developing our team. We are proud that we will have the opportunity to continue on this path in the current climate.
We see this as a fantastic opportunity to further support the development of individuals in our industry and our regional economies and communities in a sustainable, inclusive, and structured manner, assisting new and current employees to gain their trade qualifications and upskill to leadership roles, enabling them to live and work locally.
We are proud to do our part, ensuring that New Zealand has a pipeline of skilled workers to support our future, helping apprentices stay connected to employment and regional communities thrive.