In greater Christchurch, as in other parts of New Zealand, too many of our young people leave school early, with few qualifications, never to return to education or training.
As a result, they struggle to find employment or to stay connected in the workforce.
A disproportionate number of Māori and Pasifika youth are in this category.
There is a high cost to this loss of human potential, as evidenced in the lack of life choices, low self esteem and limited life satisfaction, disconnection from the community and society, lack of economic contribution to the common good, and the ongoing need for social support.
We need thriving well resourced culturally responsive services that will work with families, whanau and the community to turn this unacceptable loss of human potential around.
Youth Futures message is: “there’s never been a time or place when qualifications, skills, education and training have been more important.”
In the wake of the earthquakes Youth Futures also notes the importance of recognising the contribution education will make to recovery in greater Christchurch.