First placement for new jobs taskforce

Published: 2 May 2023

Ashburton Mayor Neil Brown visited Ashburton Hospital to meet the first local young person to land a job as part of a programme run by the Mayors Taskforce For Jobs.

Micheala (Micky) Currie, 23, is in her second week working at the hospital as part of the health facility’s security workforce.

She is on duty overnight with the Allied Security team, making sure the hospital and surrounding buildings are locked and safe, and escorting staff to cars when they are leaving during the hours of darkness.

Micky said the support from taskforce youth employment coach Sharon Watson had been instrumental in her landing the job, which she was enjoying.

“The interview was the scary part and Sharon was allowed to be there in support, so it became more like a conversation.”

Funds from the taskforce programme also helped Micky buy clothes she would need on the job.

Mayor Brown said it was great to see the first placement and four others were in the pipeline.

“This programme is really important in helping young people who are not in employment, training or education into jobs that help our community tick. We know there is a shortage of labour in parts of our district and that there are young people out there who could do the work, given a chance and some training.”

The Mayors Taskforce For Jobs is a national network and, in partnership with the Ministry of Social Development, set up the Rural Community Resilience programme – Ashburton District Council is running a pilot programme for six months and it was launched to local employers in February.

Mayor Brown said Council was keen to hear from other employers who wanted to take part in the programme.

Want to know more? Email us on