This story was written by BCN student on the YES programme, Jorheena Lapoisi, and edited by Esther Pavihi.
Fifty-two students from Niue High school’s senior classes Years 11 to the school leavers signed up for the Youth Employment Scheme (YES) programme this year.
Organised by the Niue Chamber of Commerce, the programme provides paid jobs at $7 per hour for the students to work either with a local business or with a government department.
One of those students is Aaron Rigamoto who is in his first year participating in the YES programme and is working at the Niue Police department.
Aaron told BCN news that he is inspired by many things to work with the Police, such as his passion for justice and upholding and enforcing the laws of the country.
He said that working for the police will help build his confidence and many good traits which will help him work towards achieving his goal of being a Police Officer in the future.
The YES program is open to students from years 11 to 13 they are given this opportunity to help students who are close to leaving school in deciding their future plans and careers.
Pele Vaoga is one of the 31 school leavers who will be needing employment having completed their studies at Niue High school. this year.
He is working with a local businessman and President of the Chamber of Commerce Sefeti Fatiaki Adriana.
Pele says that his future career choice is to work in building and construction and he is also keen on joining the military. He told BCN news that he grew up in a family of builders so he has always had that interest.
Pele Vaoga is thankful for the YES programme because these opportunities are not available to many students in other countries, where they get to work for some pocket money for the Christmas holidays.
Tamatoa Pihigia was also out working with his YES employer Charlie Fuku Tongahai. Charlie Fuku known to many as Fix, is one of the longest-serving plumbers on the island and is always happy to teach the young ones.
Tamatoa was happy to work along with Fix because he is also interested in a career in building and construction and may include plumbing in there as well.
With the shortage of qualified plumbers on the island, Tamatoa may have chosen the right path to a career as a plumber.
Some of these students are school leavers so they will be looking for more long-term employment after this YES programme, something the Minister of Education Hon. Sauni Tongatule says the government is quite concerned about having to find ways to employ the 31 school leavers.