Nelson’s Mayor is partnering up with an aspiring young rangatahi to help develop the leadership of young Māori within the community.

Mayor Rachel Reese is once again taking part in the Tuia and Mayors Taskforce for Jobs, as part of the Rangatahi Leadership Programme.

It is an intentional, long-term, intergenerational approach which involves local mayors selecting young Maori to mentor on a one-to-one basis, to encourage and enhance leadership skills.

Selected rangatahi are expected to undertake and record a 100 hour community service project in their respective communities.

Rangatahi will also obtain support and receive leadership training by attending four leadership development wananga over the course of the year.

Mayor Reese says she sees great value in the programme.

“Educating and inspiring the leaders of tomorrow is one of the best things we can do to positively influence the future of our communities.

“I thoroughly enjoy my role as a mentor and I feel it is a great honour to be able to guide young people in this way.”

This year Mayor Reese’s mentoree is Tamati-James Wilson, 20, from Stoke.

The former Nelson College student has just started a full-time role at Garin College as the Te Reo Māori teacher, for year 9 to year 13, and is completing a teaching degree with Te Wānanga o Raukawa.

He says he’s excited at the opportunity.

“I am really passionate about my whakapaka and I am determined to grow and learn, guiding both myself and my iwi to new opportunities."