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Youth Employability Programme

Whai Basketball & Youthtown are working together to deliver the YEP in Tauranga.

Youthtown is a National Organization established in 1932 focused on empowering young people in Aotearoa. Basketball is the most popular sport in New Zealand for those under 30 years of age and in particular the 18-24 age group.

Whai Basketball is a Registered Charity and through Whai Tribe we are seeking the advancement of education and physical health in young people based in Tauranga. The word “whai” as a verb means to “chase” or “pursue”. We are pursuing a vibrant and socially connected Tauranga through lifting the horizon of possibility for young people in our city.

Whai Basketball uses its players as “stars of the game” and coaches to attract young people into our YEP and equip them with the seven employability skills employers regard as essential.

  • Positive attitude

  • Willingness to learn

  • Teamwork

  • Self-management

  • Communication

  • Thinking skills

  • Resilience

Our YEP is comprised of two main components: skill-building workshops and work experience. 

During the skill-based workshops participants will be coached by our highly skilled Whai Basketball coaches.  They will form social connections that will help build confidence and prepare them for a sucssessful start in the workfroce as they learn and play basketball together.

We are currently seeking young people between the ages of 14-24 to join our 10-week YEP programme.  The programme helps equip young people who are transitioning directly to the workforce from school or training, as well as those returning to the workforce. The outcomes are.

  • Engagement in permanent employment

  • Social connections, and personal well-being through participating in meaningful work

  • Values, knowledge and skills to get a job, keep it, and build a career out of it


The workshops are delivered in two parts. The first part is delivered by a skilled facilitator provided by Youthtown.

The second part is delivered by a skilled basketball coach on a basketball court and is designed to improve physical health, skill development and experience being in a team through small games.


Our work experience component provides young people with opportunities to get involved with their community, to develop and practice their employability skills in a safe and structured context, and to gauge where their skills and interests for work lie.


The basketball component of the YEP is designed by our Director of Coaching, Alex Stojkovic. Alex has over 20 years coaching experience - ranging from grass roots to Head Coaching in the New Zealand Men’s NBL. Alex is currently part of the Basketball New Zealand Coach Leadership group.

Workshops will be run by Whai Assistant Coaches.

Register Now

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Message Sent. Thanks for registering your interest in our Youth Employability Programme. We will be in contact with the details of the next avalible programme.


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