The partnership between four organisations has enabled a better future for many students in the Northern Wairoa district

Youth gym opens

by Jill Dickie

A shared initiative of mentoring and developing leadership skills between Dargaville community groups has resulted in a new youth training facility at Dargaville High School.

The partnership between Dargaville Police Youth Aid, Dargaville Youth Charitable Trust and Dargaville High School developed from student goals to become physically active and develop a better fitness level in preparation for working in either the army or the police service.

Youth Aid officer Constable Reuben Cohen recognised that many of the youth justice participants are unable to join commercial gyms and arranged for DYCT to apply for funding from Pub Charities. They were granted more than $40,000.

The shared initiative allows Police Youth Aid to mentor and complete physical training alongside Dargaville High School students, who gain leadership opportunities through helping others.

“As a Dargaville old boy myself, I feel a sense of responsibility to give back to the community. I am grateful to the community partners involved because we couldn’t proceed without them,” Constable Cohen said.

Northland district police commander, Superintendent Tony Hill, was confident the area has an effective facility for helping youth, adding,

Reuben has done an admirable job here.” The programme has successfully placed students in employment.