Six whānau from Ngāti Whātua are working onsite at Hawaiki as part of an initiative led by Fred Povey, Property Development and Maintenance Lead and Wyllis Maihi, Marae Operations Manager at Ōrākei Marae in order to help young whānau obtain their building qualifications.
Anton Kahotea (29), Sebastien Tumahai (22), Wilfred Povey (20), and Paraone Ratima (17) are all apprentices working alongside Brightline Construction, who are supporting Vivian Construction with the new whānau housing development at Hawaiki. Having just left school, Paraone is the youngest of the apprentices. Raphael Papalii and Tereo Ururamo, both qualified builders, are also contracting directly to Brightline.
Povey says the apprentices are all gaining valuable experience of the new build process from start to finish, right on the whenua.
“They love working with their hands, which drew them into construction and now they have the opportunity to get qualified, hence why they took this opportunity. It’s been really good for them,” Povey says. “Once they’re qualified, a lot of them actually want to go on and start their own businesses.”
The apprentices will be starting at Hawaiki on Monday 2nd October.