UCOL Carpentry students Adopt a Kindy

Press Release – UCOL

The UCOL Wairarapa Certificate in Carpentry course is offering its skills to the kindergartens of Wairarapa. The unusual offer also gives UCOL Wairarapa Carpentry students yet another chance to build a real-life community project.5 December 2011

UCOL Carpentry students Adopt a Kindy

The UCOL Wairarapa Certificate in Carpentry course is offering its skills to the kindergartens of Wairarapa.

The unusual offer also gives UCOL Wairarapa Carpentry students yet another chance to build a real-life community project.

Adopt a Kindy is the brainchild of Carpentry lecturer Pete Van der Veen and is adds to the Certificate programme’s practice of providing free labour to small community projects.

The Carpentry students have already worked on a variety of building tasks, including the construction of an adventure playground, exterior cladding installation, and concreting and decking for several kindergartens and schools around Wairarapa, over the past three years.

Recently they also helped students at Makoura College complete the building of a house.

The time the students work on the projects contributes towards their apprenticeship hours – an advantage unique to a Level 4 programme.

“We have just completed an outside storage shed at Una Williams Kindergarten here in Masterton and we saved them hundreds of dollars in labour. We also made them three large planter boxes and a small cubby box,” says Pete. “I saw their planters today and they are thriving, with veges, fruit trees and herbs. The kids love them.”

Adopt a Kindy will be open to all the kindergartens in Wairarapa who can apply to UCOL, with the winner chosen by ballot. The ‘adoption’ would last a year.

Pete says, “The adoption would take the form of an agreement whereby we would be the first point of contact if they needed anything done around the kindergarten. They will supply all materials, we will supply the labour. If it was something that is beyond our area of expertise, we would recommend a suitable contractor as an alternative.”

Pete says the carpentry programme’s ‘free labour’ arrangement is a win-win situation for all concerned. “It allows our students to work in a real life environment while achieving curriculum and training outcomes. The clients get facilities they otherwise may not have been able to afford.”

Campus Manager Angela Hewitt says Adopt a Kindy is a highly productive way for UCOL carpentry students to be involved in the community, while gaining valuable hands on experience in their chosen trade.

“It is just one of many exciting teaching innovations across all UCOL Wairarapa programmes, where the students take their skills out into the community.”

Interested kindergartens should contact Dan Burt at 0800GOUCOL or d.burt@ucol.ac.nz.

ENDS

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