12 Jun 2014

Farming careers beckon rangatahi

6:50 am on 12 June 2014

A Wairarapa Marae is striving to help rangatahi into lucrative agriculture and farming careers.

The Taratahi Agricultural Training Centre and the pa have joined forces to provide a pilot programme for Kuranui College students on Papawai Marae near Featherston.

Ten of the 12 young people involved in the scheme are whakapapa to Papawai and Ngati Kahungunu.

Marae chairperson Paora Ammunson said it was about drawing in rangatahi rather than losing them to jobs in the big cities.

He said he did not know of any other career where, after eight years, a farmer could potentially earn up to $100,000 a year and accumulate a $1 million asset base.

Mr Ammunson said the scheme would be run on land blocks owned by the marae and was suited for students who did not cope in a classroom environment.

Taratahi is considering rolling out the pilot scheme nationwide.