2017 Apprentice Days 

  • Palmerston North: 31 October
  • Christchurch: 1 November


Apprentice Days are held biennially in each region to give apprentices the opportunity to get together, strengthen their network and share their experiences. It’s an important opportunity for the ATNZ team to raise health and safety issues and deepen the apprentices’ understanding of the importance of following health and safety procedures.

In 2017 we broadened our focus to include mental health. New Zealand has the highest youth suicide rate in the world and the majority of our ATNZ apprentices fit the profile of the most at-risk group – men aged 20 to 24. We have a moral responsibility to support them.

In 2017 we partnered with prominent mental health educator Mike King and his charity Key to Life to encourage our apprentices to show strength by speaking up about mental health issues. His presentation focuses on how he overcame drug and alcohol addiction, and his continued battle against depression. It is youth-focused and engaging, and encourages people to speak up about mental health.   

What our apprentices said

  • “Stoked to see a company that is so positive about mental health.”
  • “Breath of fresh air.”  
  • “Subject never gets talked about enough.”
  • “Mike’s talk really helped a situation I am in.”


Employee assistance programme

ATNZ has always offered an employee assistance programme but it has been underutilised. In 2017 we introduced a new employee assistance programme, OCP. We have received positive feedback about the service and continue to publicise it widely.

After the change in service and Mike King’s presentations at Apprentice Days, there was a 35% increase in employees seeking assistance and guidance from OCP in comparison to 2016.


Staff training  

Everyone at ATNZ is working to raise the importance of speaking up within ATNZ and letting our apprentices know that it is a strength to speak up during hard times.

All account managers have completed Psychological First Aid training which equips them with the skills to champion the wellbeing and welfare of the apprentices. This forms part of an ongoing development programme.