The Department of Conservation will launch its second Tauira Kaitiaki Taiao Maori Conservation Cadetship programme in Waikato this week.
Nine young Maori from across the North Island are set to begin a 21-month training programme in practical conservation field skills and Te Reo and tikanga Maori, to help build Maori capability in conservation management.
The programme will be launched at Ngaaruawaahia north of Hamilton and will be hosted by Waikato Tainui and will be attended by the Director-General of Conservation, Al Morrison.
“Conservation management is very important to Maori and they are being presented with greater opportunities through the Treaty Settlements process,” said Mr. Morrison.
The practical training that cadets receive as part of the programme will include fire fighting techniques, boat handling skills, species monitoring, radio communication training, safe handling of agrichemicals and the use of 4WD and all terrain vehicles (ATVs), all of which are NZQA accredited.
The 2011 programme is funded by the Department of Conservation in partnership with Nga Whenua Rahui and is driven by the need for Maori to, not only participate in conservation, but to lead their own conservation projects on Maori land.
“This training will help build capability and skills within Maori communities as they take on greater roles in conservation throughout the country including freshwater and marine initiatives,” said Mr. Morrison.
On completion of the course, cadets receive a Level 3 National Certificate in Conservation and Trainee Ranger Certificate from the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology as well as a Level 3 Certificate in Tikanga Maori from Te Wananga o Aotearoa.
The new intake follows a hugely successful pilot programme that began in 2009 with 14 students graduating from the programme in Turangi last November.A pōwhiri will be held at 10.30am on Tuesday 29th of March at Hopuhopu in Ngaruawahia.