Ngāi Tahu Seafood supporting fishers at a grass roots level

Ngāi Tahu Seafood has set up a scholarship to help Ngāi Tahu fishers gain their Inshore Launch Masters tickets.

The scholarship is run in partnership with Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology and supported by Te Ohu Kai Moana, the Mazzetta Fund and Ngāi Tahu Seafood partners. The five-week block course enables participants to operate vessels of up to 20 metres within 12 miles of the New Zealand coast.

Ngāi Tahu Seafood chief executive, Brian Moriarty, is pleased about the potential of the scholarship programme and says support at a grass roots level will help secure well-trained young people in the seafood industry.

“That’s key for us. We want to develop young fishers and we’re right into building the programme. It’s a good thing for whānau. It eases the pressure on their pockets and it encourages young fishers into opportunities for development. It’s a way for us to connect with Ngāi Tahu whānau at a grassroots level.”

The recipients of the first round of scholarships were Reuben Stewart, Ben Anderson, Dylan Fowler, Storm Wardrop, all from Bluff; and Rory Young and Chad Waitiri from Invercargill.

For Storm Wardop, who affiliates to Te Rau Aroha Marae in Bluff, the course offers significant benefits.
“It’s time for me to progress to the next stage of fishing and now, because of the course, I have ultimately become my own boss. I have just purchased a boat and I’m now able to work, catching my father’s quota. And in later years, I’ll have something to instill in my two sons, which is a really important thing for me. I’m proud to be Ngāi Tahu and always will be.

“We’re pleased with the first round of scholarship results and we look forward to giving other young Ngāi Tahu the same opportunity,” says Brian Moriarty.

Storm Wardrop at work at sea.

The scholarships are open now. Applicants must be over 16 years and have at least 18 months of sea time on a commercial vessel.

See below for more selection criteria:

  • The applicant must be Ngāi Tahu
  • The application form must be filled in at least a month prior to the course being attended to allow for processing of the application
  • To achieve a full scholarship, the applicant must be working on a vessel that supplies Ngāi Tahu Seafood or one of its ACE partners. Part scholarships may be made available to Ngāi Tahu fishers who are not on vessels supplying Ngāi Tahu Seafood or its ACE partners.
  • The amount of the scholarship will depend on the course fees, location and any other relevant criteria. Applicants will be informed of the decision of the committee within three weeks of the fully completed application being received.
  • The applicant must have the written support of his or her rūnanga in the form of a letter
  • One other character / personal reference must be supplied
  • Any funding approved will only be paid to the applicant on the successful completion of the course being funded and requires proof of passing the course
  • Approval is not automatic – it will depend on available funds, the number of application at any point in time and any other criteria that the selection committee decides
  • An applicant is limited to one fishing scholarship per year and no more than two in any five-year period
  • The maximum amount of a full scholarships will be $2500.

Applications are available from Ngāi Tahu Seafood, PO Box 3787, Christchurch 8140.
Phone 03 358 0681.
Email [email protected]