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Central Hawke’s Bay Rangatahi ‘Have a Go!’ with Civil Infrastructure

HaveAgo 10

Russell Park was a buzz of activity on Friday 19th November as close to 80 Year 10 students from Central Hawke’s Bay College gathered for the inaugural ‘Have a Go Day’.

Hosted by Central Hawke’s Bay District Council’s Jobs in Central Hawke’s Bay team and the Project Management Office, Have a Go Day presented rangatahi with a hands-on opportunity to understand the variety of what is involved in working in roles within the civil infrastructure industry.

Central Hawke’s Bay District Council’s partners including Downer, Fulton Hogan, Veolia, Recreational Services, Higgins, Stantec, WSP, Lowe Environmental Impact, Centralines and Russell Roads each hosted an interactive station inviting students to try their hand at various skills including operating a 3.5t excavator with Downer, and mending a mock water leak with Veolia, alongside experienced operators.

“Have a Go Day was all about young people getting stuck in, and interacting with our contracting partners to get a feel for what life in the contracting and construction industry looks like,” said Monique Davidson, Chief Executive of the Central Hawke’s Bay District Council.

“Life in local government is so broad in its opportunities, and Have a Go Day demonstrated just that.
“Thank you to our partners who made the day happen.”

Darren de Klerk, Director of Projects and Programmes, said, “There is high demand for a skilled workforce within the infrastructure sector.”

“Have a Go Day allowed Council alongside our contracting partners to showcase the industry, and provide exposure to roles within the civil infrastructure field as our local rangatahi consider what they might want to do in their future careers.”

Industry partners involved in the event were encouraged to provide as many hands-on activities as possible for students, sharing machinery, tools, drones, activities and experience, engaging students in learning what possibilities are out there.

Mayor Alex Walker said, “It was excellent to see so many students fully engaged, smiling, and asking questions at Have a Go Day”.

“We want to provide as many opportunities as possible to allow the younger generation to thrive in the future, and days like this can help to open eyes, and see the possibilities that are out there.”

Councillor Pip Burne said of the event; “My teenage daughter came home buzzing after her day spent trialling all sorts of fun stuff that was organised.

“She is now talking about being a Civil Engineer!

“I’m sure she is only one of the dozens of students who never realised entirely what was out there in the form of a career.”

This initiative is one of many facilitated by the Jobs in Central Hawke’s Bay team as they assist Youth aged 16-24 into long term sustainable employment within Central Hawke’s Bay. To learn more about the work they do contact the team on 027 258 0633 or email

12 January 2022

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