Thanks to a forklift driver training course run by Corrections in the Bay of Plenty, nine offenders have just increased their chances of gaining employment.
The training forms part of the Work and Living Skills programme at Greerton Community Corrections Service Centre, and is designed to help prepare offenders gain essential skills and qualifications to thrive in the community post-sentence.
It was a highly successful course with all nine participants achieving a pass mark or better, to attain a national certification. The top mark went to a woman whose partner and his sister also completed the training.
“There was definitely some good natured family rivalry during the course,” says Greerton Service Manager Boof Richardson. “When there are three offenders in one family all serving a sentence, this is the type of thing that can really turn their life around.”
A forklift driver can earn up to $60,000 a year, which is $5,000 above the average annual income in New Zealand. On overtime, an experienced forklift driver can earn as much as $30 per hour.
The names of all nine offenders were passed to Offender Recruitment Consultant Steve De Wet, who has already touched base with a local employer to help them gain full time paid employment.
The forklift driver certification allows a person to operate a fork lift even without a driver licence.
Employers interested in knowing more should contact Steve on 027 886 6939.