The aim of the Rangatahi Evaluation research project was to explore the present status of rangatahi who previously accessed training programmes provided by Silver Fern MotorSport Charitable Trust. The Project evaluated a cohort of rangatahi who attended the Trust’s training programmes between 2017 and 2021, inclusive of Youth Automotive Training and Learner License Training Programmes delivered by the Trust.
Many New Zealanders have been adversely impacted by the global pandemic and its rippling effects. National wellbeing data shows 9.6% of young people aged 15 and over have experienced high or very high levels of emotional distress during 2020/2021, the highest since 2011. Young people aged 15–24 years are usually more severely affected by economic crises relative to other age groups. They are the first to lose their jobs and the last to be employed. This is partly due to having a lack of experience/skills and missing out on opportunities to access training. Young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and those who have disengaged from education and training are at higher risk of adverse long-term outcomes.
Outcomes of this project demonstrated the resilience and self-determination of rangatahi who have been supported by Silver Fern MotorSport Charitable Trust. These rangatahi have adapted to the stressors of their pandemic and economic environment to achieve occupational and driver licence goals, enhancing their accessibility to employment and long-term training pathways. Outcome of the project have also been beneficial to the Trust to ascertain those past clients who still require support, providing an opportunity for re-engagement.