Auckland Airport today formally launched Ara, its South Auckland jobs and skills hub. Ara has connected 211 people living in the airport’s South Auckland neighbourhood with long-term employment and training since it began as a trial in November 2015, and will connect thousands more local people with employers based at the airport over the next 30 years as the company builds its ‘airport of the future’.
Adrian Littlewood, Auckland Airport’s Chief Executive, says: “People in the South Auckland community tell us that having stable work near their homes is important to them. Our location in South Auckland and our 30-year infrastructure development programme put us in a unique position to generate employment opportunities with businesses based here. We’ve set up Ara to connect local people with local jobs.”
Insight Economics has calculated that the benefits of the airport’s 30-year investment in infrastructure include creating around 27,000 more jobs.
“Long-term, local employment benefits everyone in South Auckland – people living here, students studying here and businesses based here, including our airport itself. We’re excited about Ara and what it means for South Auckland and Auckland Airport’s development plans.”
Ara is a charitable trust established by Auckland Airport. It is a partnership between Auckland Airport, the South Auckland community, Fletchers, Hawkins and other local employers, government agencies (the Ministries of Social Development, Business Innovation and Employment, and Education and the Tertiary Education Commission), Auckland Council, local schools and tertiary institutes, industry training organisations and training providers.
Since it began as a trial in November 2015, Ara has placed 227 people in jobs, 211 of whom come from South Auckland. One hundred and three of these 227 people were previously on benefits. Twenty-six people placed by Ara are building their skills through apprenticeships.
In addition, 1,068 people have successfully completed training through Ara. Sixty-eight students from five secondary schools near the airport have been or are currently involved in a work experience programme through Ara to support their NCEA studies.
“While Ara has to date focussed on placing people into construction jobs, that focus is now expanding to include the many industries located around the airport, including logistics, travel and tourism, retail and hospitality,” says Mr Littlewood.
Auckland Airport is investing more than $1 million every working day on core airport infrastructure and expects this level of investment will likely continue into the near future. The major upgrade of Auckland Airport’s international departure area is now well underway, as is the expansion of Pier B of the international terminal which will add two more contact gates that can each accommodate an A380 or two smaller aircraft. Auckland Airport is also progressing the design of the new domestic section of its future combined domestic and international terminal.
| An Auckland airport release || June 2, 2017 |||