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Programme overview

This apprenticeship programme leads to the awarding of the New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Peer Support) (Level 4) qualification. It is well-supported and resourced with a team of Apprenticeship Advisors providing pastoral care and support.

The Peer Support apprenticeship programme provides specific skills and knowledge for the peer support workforce. The underpinning philosophy of this programme is to build a person-centred, critical thinking workforce.

This programme is aimed at the broader peer support workforce inclusive of all sectors such as mental health, addiction, disability, or significant health conditions where peer roles may be identified. Apprentices who have gained lived experiences will be able to work alongside a person with similar significant health concerns to facilitate learning and support those experiencing challenges and disempowerment to increase their autonomy, wellbeing, change and self-determination.

Learning outcomes: 

  • Supporting people, family and whānau with their goals.
  • Understanding of the evolution of peer work and the peer work role, and peer work practices in Aotearoa.
  • Demonstrating knowledge of Te Tiriti o Waitangi when providing support in their role.
  • Demonstrating a knowledge of kawa and tikanga and the ability to relate the unique place Māori have as tangata whenua of Aotearoa in their role.
  • Displaying self-awareness, reflective practice, self-care, and personal leadership in the workplace.
  • Actively contributing to a culture of professionalism, safety, and quality in the workplace.
  • Establishing a purposeful relationship with a person accessing support from a peer worker.

Download qualification brochure

Suitability criteria for programme entry

Please review the criteria for entry into this programme.

Download the suitability criteria

Funding to support your business

Several grants and funding options are available to help meet the costs of attaining Careerforce qualifications. Employers may also qualify for the Apprenticeship Boost which provides a wage subsidy for new and existing apprentices in their first two years of training, encouraging employers to retain their current apprentices, and to take on new apprentices.

You can view these options at

Learn more about Careerforce apprenticeships

Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the questions below to reveal the answers.  Please contact us via if you have a question not covered below.

The Careerforce apprenticeship programme is for experienced staff. It builds on the technical skills and knowledge that staff already have, to develop their critical thinking, reflective practice and expand their ‘toolkit’. Apprentices need to have lived experience and be working in a peer work or peer support role.  To be successful, the person undertaking this programme will also need the support of their employer and have a robust Self Care/Wellness Plan in place.

Apprentices gain their skills and knowledge through on-job learning. The core value of vocational training is that it sets people up with the right experiences, skills and knowledge. Apprentices can earn while they learn, gain nationally-recognised qualifications, support more complex health conditions and handle challenging social issues, resulting in better health outcomes for the New Zealand community.

The learning at this level is self-directed and the apprentice will be developing new ideas and new ways of approaching their work. They will be stretched and allowed to explore special interest areas in greater depth, becoming more proactive rather than reactive.

The on-job learning is supported by Careerforce’s Aka Toi online learning platform.

Careerforce Apprenticeships are well-supported and resourced. The Careerforce Apprenticeship Advisor acts as “coach” providing one-on-one support appropriate to the individual apprentice and their needs. The apprentice’s advisor will engage with the employer and others as needed to provide additional learning support and appropriate pastoral care based on the apprentice’s needs. The Advisor could also be the assessor.

The expected duration for the Peer Support Work apprenticeship is 21 months.

The enrolment fee for this Level 4 apprenticeship is $2,000 (inc GST) NZD. 

The employer usually pays the fees for staff to enrol in these programmes. To enrol in a Careerforce programme, you must be currently employed, and have the support of your employer.

You may be eligible for Fees Free training. To find out more and to learn how to check your eligibility, see our Fees Free page.



To enrol in the Apprenticeship in Peer Support, please complete an expression of interest form or you can call 0800 277 486email or speak to your local Careerforce Workplace Advisor

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Level 4

Ideal for

  • Peer Support Workers
  • Navigators
  • Peer Support Work
Relevant for the following sectors
  • Disability Support
  • Healthcare Services
  • Mental Health & Addiction Support
  • Social Services
  • 128 Credits
  • 21 months
  • $2000 (inc GST)