New partnership aims to increase Māori and Pacific leadership in Aotearoa

February 16, 2022

A new partnership between two non-profit organisations; Keystone Trust and TupuToa is set to offer increased corporate pathways for Māori and Pacific students across Aotearoa.

“Comprising roughly 27 percent of the national population, Māori and Pacific peoples hold far fewer corporate leadership positions, which has been identified as a key social barrier in New Zealand,” says Keystone Trust general manager Amanda Stanes.

“In announcing Keystone Trust’s new partnership with internship and career pathways provider TupuToa, we hope to generate a greater number of career pathways for Māori and Pacific students, while supporting their education, development and transition to the workforce,” she adds.

Since its inception in 1994, Keystone Trust has granted more than 227 scholarships to New Zealand students, through more than 45 strategic partnerships with professional businesses across the property and construction sectors.

TupuToa, which has successfully delivered an innovative internship programme for more than 700 Māori and Pacific students, and helped more than 80 per cent pathway into corporate and public sector roles, over the last six years, is an obvious alliance for Keystone Trust.

“Our internship programme provides rangatahi the opportunity to experience an array of opportunities, to learn, and develop, while being fully supported by a navigator, so they can proudly embrace their cultural heritage while growing into meaningful careers,” says Tupu Toa chief executive Anne Fitisemanu.

“Keystone Trust’s vast network of affiliates across the property and construction sectors opens new horizons for our students and offers greater exposure for an industry that is set for a huge period of expansion in the years to come,” Ms Fitisemanu says.

Utilising a network that includes events, mentor programmes, financial assistance and ongoing educational support, some of the Trust’s most recognised affiliates include long-standing supporters, Bayleys Real Estate, Stride Property and Bell Gully.

Presently, TupuToa’s tertiary students can engage in a 12 week paid internship or a 6 month cadetship with its corporate partner organisations – the goal being to convert these into full-time employment once the interns have graduated.

“TupuToa is developing as a leader in its field, of growing Māori and Pacific leaders for a greater Aotearoa, and Keystone Trust is proud to have formed this partnership,” Ms Stanes says.

Ms Stanes says the work both organisations undertake is two-fold; supporting indigenous and marginalised students into educational and career achievement, while successfully supporting firms to achieve diversity objectives, particularly in recruiting and onboarding Māori and Pacific peoples. 

“Partnerships such as this one between TupuToa and Keystone Trust aim to accelerate the realisation of potential that exists within our Māori and Pacific communities, by addressing the persistent inequalities our communities face.

“Our programmes help to disrupt intergenerational disadvantage, and instead inspire and motivate rangatahi, building their self-confidence and exposure to corporate environments. At the same time, we empower organisations to unlock their cultural potential to be authentically inclusive,” says Ms Fitisemanu.



For further media enquiries please contact Keystone Trust below.

Amanda Stanes                                             Anne Fitisemanu

Keystone Trust – General Manager                 TupuToa – Chief Executive Officer

M: 021 689 380                                               M: 021942954

E:                    E:

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