New Zealand’s construction sector needs more recruits. The Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO) is launching a major campaign in April to demonstrate the possibilities of a career in the trades, with the main objective being to attract new apprentices.
The Not Your Average Tradie Road Trip, which kicked off in Auckland on April 10, will see a group of talented BCITO apprentices spending four weeks visiting different regions, helping out community organisations, charities and schools with building woes.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to show people what a career in the trades offers, while also supporting our local communities,” BCITO chief executive Warwick Quinn says.
“New Zealand is in the midst of a skills shortage. Our community groups, schools and charities are feeling this too, with many buildings desperately in need of maintenance and updating,” he says.
“With skills in high demand, the cost of construction can be out of reach for many community organisations.
“At the BCITO we have a group of exceptionally skilled apprentices across multiple trades in the industry, and this is a wonderful opportunity to showcase a range of careers in construction while also giving something back to communities.”
After leaving Auckland, the road trip will visit Tauranga, New Plymouth and Queenstown before heading back north to Auckland.
The tradies will be carrying out work at a number of locations, including dedicated spaces for at-risk youth, a health and social services provider, a surf club and schools, and will also be working with Habitat for Humanity.
“Everybody deserves a decent place to live,” Habitat for Humanity New Zealand executive director Conrad LaPointe says. “However, in New Zealand, and especially in Auckland, this is becoming increasingly hard.
“Because of demand, the cost of labour and materials are rising, and many people are finding themselves needing some extra help — that’s where we come in,” Mr LaPointe says.
“A simple, decent home is the foundation for a better life. We know the work we do makes a real difference. We are struggling to keep up with the demand for our services, and it is wonderful to have some BCITO apprentices helping us out with our latest project.”
Mr Quinn says thousands more apprentices are needed to fill the demand in the building sector. “According to Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment forecasts, one in five new jobs created between 2016 and 2019 will be in construction.
“These numbers show the construction sector is an excellent career option.
“Today, many young New Zealanders expect more from their chosen career. They are looking for job security and for work with a purpose, something that offers a social good.
“The trades are a fantastic example of this — we build the environments our communities live, work and play in, and we are looking forward to making a difference on the road trip,” Mr Quinn says.
Follow the action at BCITO.TV.