We build strong kids
strong families strong communities

Full Time Programmes

16-19 years old? Enrol into our FREE Youth-Guarantee funded programmes and gain Level 1 and 2 NZQA Qualifications. Our Y-Skills programmes can support eligible learners into further study, apprenticeships and employment.

Korihi te manu The bird sings

Takiri mai i te ata The morning has dawned

Ka ao, ka ao, ka awatea The day has broken

Tihei Mauri Ora Behold there is life

Educational programmes are delivered under sub-contracted agreement with the National Council of YMCA’s of New Zealand [NZQA Registered PTE\

Dag a sheep, bag a career! National Certificate in Educational Achievement (NCEA) Level 2 Vocational Pathway Award; Primary Industries [VP3]

Our NCEA Level 2 Primary Industries programme is unique, equipping you to look after yourself as you look after the farm. This programme is hands on, spending 4 days a week on a local sheep station.


Love an adventure? This is for you! National Certificate in Educational Achievement (NCEA) Level 2 Vocational Pathway Award; Service Industries/ Sport & Recreation [VP4]

Camping, tramping, climbing, abseiling, cycling, navigating, kayaking… the list goes on. These are all the things you’ll learn to do safely and with great processes to set you up as an outdoor educator or propel you into a career in adventure!

Programme information: https://ymca.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Programme-Info-Sheet-VPOutdoors-v3-national-vsn-2020.pdf

Te Papa Ako Toi / Skills for You - New Zealand Certificate in Foundation Skills (Level 1) v2

Available at both our Invercargill and Winton sites, Te Papa Ako Toi focuses on building a work or study ready you! Self-management, confidence and how we communicate are a big focus of this programme, alongside basic knowledge, literacy and numeracy. Bonus: you’ll come out with a CV and interview skills, as well as knowing how to balance your time and budget - this is gold!

Programme information: https://ymca.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Programme-Information-Sheet-NZCFS1-v2-all-regions.pdf

Kia Rite Mo Te Mahi / Ready2Work - New Zealand Certificate in Foundation Skills (Level 2) v2

Similar to our Level 1 programme, Kia Rite Mo Te Mahi will set you up to get into work or tertiary study with a balanced approach. You’ll look at how you interract within a diverse community, how to nail a job interview and how to get the most out of your finances as well as looking after yourself and the people around you.

Programme information: https://ymca.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Programme-Info-sheet-NZCFS2-v2-national-vsn-2020.pdf

Our Mission in Education

Education is an important component of the YMCA mission. At YMCA South we hold to the fundamental purpose of the YMCA movement - founded in enabling young people to thrive and take their place in our community – our purpose is to ‘build strong kids, strong families, strong communities.

Put another way, we invest in the next generation. Education at the Y creates new opportunity. Our philosophy is based on the understanding that education is about developing the whole person. We believe learning is socially constructed and that we learn from old and new experiences. We also learn from each other recognising the unique talents in each person. We value qualifications as a statement of competence and the opportunities qualifications open up for us.

As a NZQA registered Private Training Establishment, we are specialist providers in Foundation and Vocational Pathway education. Our full-time programmes can lead to lead to NZQA level 1 and 2 qualifications. Unit standard and/or project-based assessments are features of our programmes and support the development of communication, problem solving, literacy, numeracy and interpersonal skills.

In accordance with section 234B of the Education Act 1989, The National Council of YMCAs of NZ has no known material conflicts of interest of any of the governing members of the establishment.

EER Report 2019: https://www.nzqa.govt.nz/providers/details.do?d-5425-o=1&providerId=938804001&d-5425-s=1

Students have this to say

“I was struggling at school with gaining credits and not attending. When I first started at the YMCA I had no credits, now I have 42 credits and I pretty much have perfect attendance.”

“I have achieved credits in Level 1. Before I came to the YMCA I didn’t have any credits. I was shy when I first came here, now I’m more open and honest. I love this course, the tutors encourage me to do more.”

“I see myself as a future farmer. At Y Rural I have a great opportunity to start getting the experience and skills to be a farmer. Learning great skills, lots of practical work, e.g. - maintaining farm vehicles, treating and handling livestock. I am currently working on fencing, mainly electric fencing. During this time, we are learning and experiencing farm health and safety. By doing this our community kids and farmers are happy and safe.”

“When I started the YMCA Connect course three months ago I was failing NCEA Level 1, but after a couple of months I gained Level 1 and I’m well on my way to get NCEA Level 2. I have made quite a few friends and it’s weird because I never had many friends my whole life. I am able to keep up my physical fitness and even gained an award for this.”

Education at YMCA Invercargill is proudly supported by