Henare is the newest Farm Assistant at Lewis Farms Dairy Farm, Levin.
He’s been with them since February 2022 and is loving his new role.
He’s not originally from Horowhenua but moved here from Wellington in his teens to live with his grandparents. Henare had done a bit of labouring and farm work before and was looking for some work locally. However, most of the work that was available was out in the ‘wop-wops’, too far to travel or was seasonal mahi. Life also hadn’t been without its struggles, and he was finding the whole process of finding employment challenging.
It wasn’t until his mother-in-law tagged him into a post on the Get-Go Facebook page that he realised there was a role going as a farm assistant. He had previously been working in the Asparagus pack-house next door to Lewis Farms and decided to apply for the job.
Henare had phone support from Fraser Daysh, the Workforce Advisor at Get‑Go about the job, the interview, and the possibilities. Fraser also got in contact with Cam Lewis, a Director at Lewis Farms and spoke to him about Henare. From there, an appointment was set up to go for an interview.
Henare says the interview process went really smoothly and was not at all intimidating. He aced the interview and was offered the job as a Farm Assistant.
It hasn’t been without its difficulties, but Henare says the whole team have been amazingly supportive in his development and training. They even offered him a near-new house on the farm for him and his partner (so there’s no travel to get to work). What time does the alarm go off? He laughs and says around 3.50am, but he has been known to hit the snooze button a couple of times.
Finding the job and getting accommodation and training has been a game‑changer for Henare. When asked if he had learned any new skills, he said he had learned so many, we wouldn’t be able to cover them all. He’s learned all aspects of Dairy Farming and he can’t speak highly enough of the team at Lewis Farms, particularly his boss - Marty. Get-Go has been in contact with Henare and the managers at Lewis Farms since his employment, to keep in touch with his progress.
Lewis Farms Director, Catherine Lewis is proud of the ongoing support they provide to Henare, and other staff who have joined their team. She says they try and wrap around whatever support staff need – especially those who may have had difficult or challenging work/life experiences. This involves using managers as mentors, sometimes using the services of a life coach, and even working with their team to help with healthy eating.
So where to for the future? Henare wants to keep learning, keep working for the next five years with Lewis Farms and eventually move into a management role (look out Marty!)
Get-Go is a proud supporter of Lewis Farms and advertises vacancies with their strawberry, asparagus and dairy farms for them regularly on social media. Get-Go also promotes opportunities with clients like Lewis Farms directly to people looking for work who are registered with GetGo.