The best office view he’s ever had
It’s an annual task which farmers admit is not top of the favourite list, but grubbing nassella tussock is one they can’t get out of.
Emma and Brent Harris and Emma’s father Allan Calder of Glencoe Downs Partnership in Scargill had a great solution this year though; getting on board with the Mayoral Taskforce For Jobs (MTFJ) programme.
This entailed employing local youth whom they mentored and taught the knack of grubbing nassella tussock.
This programme goes further than simply getting rid of a pesky plant though.
“We’ve just been so grateful to have these guys come and help us, and it’s also been really good seeing them develop their skills and confidence,” said Emma.
The MTFJ programme is a rewarding combination for these farmers, providing opportunites of employment to those youth needing work, and helping assistance with the important task of grubbing the nassella tussock.
“It’s been a two-way thing, as we were able to teach them new skills, and it was a job we haven’t had to do ourselves this year.”
Jayden Boocock played a big part in the success of MTFJ this year, and was a pivotal part of the great work for Glencoe Downs Partnership.
Leithfield based, he had been drain laying, but was seeking a change in direction.
“It was great to learn about the tussock – it always grows in that tough terrain, in the nuggetiest spots!”
Jayden said communication with his MTFJ team mates was key when out in the hills.
“It was about working in the same line, not rushing it, and working together to get the job done properly.”
And he never got sick of the views.
“That was a main part - you can’t beat good work, and it’s the best office view I’ve ever had.”
Jayden encourages any young people in 2021 to get involved with MTFJ who may be seeking work and new skills.
“Give it your best shot, it has helped me a lot.”
Jayden is currently based at Mt Beautiful in Cheviot where he’s grubbing nassella tussock and Chilean needlegrass. He’s aiming to get his Growsafe certificate next so he can get involved in spraying jobs.
The Mayoral Taskforce for Jobs (MTFJ) is a collaboration between local businesses and the youth of Hurunui District. This year, Hurunui District Council has been successful in securing up to $500,000 of funding from Central Government with the Ministry of Social Development, to build working relationships between local businesses and youths (aged between 18-24) who have been displaced from work due to COVID-19.
For any businesses or youth interested in finding out more, please contact Joni Howe or Chris King at HDC, 03 3148 816 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The MTFJ programme runs until mid 2021.