New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Social and Community Services) (Level 4) with strands in Community Healthwork and Mental Health and Addiction Support

As part of the government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) to rebuild New Zealand's economy, this programme is now free^. For terms and conditions, more information, and other programmes covered by this scheme, click here.

Due to high demand, we recommend applying early.

Programme highlights

Make a real difference to the health and well-being of the people in your community and get a career in an essential industry.

This health qualification empowers you to learn the skills and knowledge you will need to help people access community and mental health services.

This entry-level qualification is the best place to start if you want to develop a career supporting the health and well-being of others.

Specialising as a mental health and addiction support worker, this qualification allows you to work alongside people, family and whanau.

Choose your specialist strand

Community healthwork
Become a community support worker and support clients to maintain their independence by using relevant teaching tools and strategies to help them manage their health and wellbeing.

Mental health and addiction support
Become a mental health and addiction support worker and support independence of our people, family and whānau by using relevant teaching tools and strategies to foster hope, support recovery and build resilience.

This qualification includes a minimum of 200 hours of work experience.

Māori and Pasifika Pathways

If you are of Māori or Pasifika descent then you also have access to Te Ara Oranga while studying this programme.

Te Ara Oranga will support you to succeed in a way that suits your needs and you will get connected with industry, opening doors to your health career pathway.

Learn more

Key facts

Start Month(s) February, July
Study Location(s) MIT Manukau
Level 4
Domestic fees Free^
Youth Guarantee (fees-free*) Not available
Programme Code NZ2992

One year (full-time)

Study Method Full-time
Credits 120
International Fees Not available to international students
Māori and Pasifika Trades Training Scholarship (fees-free*) Not available
Qualification New Zealand Certificate

Entry requirements


Be 17 years of age or older.


Applicants must meet the following criteria for admission into the programme:

  • NCEA Level 2 or equivalent;
  • For applicants 20 years of age and over there are no minimum academic requirements.
English language entry requirements

Applicants must have sufficient competence in the English language to undertake this programme which is taught and assessed in English. Any applicant whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of their English language competency as follows:

English language requirements for applicants for whom English is a second language

Applicants for whom English is a second language (including international applicants) for the minimum English language requirements refer to the requirements set out in the NZQF Programme and Accreditation Rules.

Regulatory and other entry requirements

This programmes includes a minimum of 200 hours of work experience.  Workplace can be embedded throughout the programme where a student is in a workplace environment.   Work experience can also be simulated where practical placements cannot be found. Or will be scheduled at the end of the programme to ensure student has the necessary practicum experience to meet competence.

Employees and volunteers may be required to undergo initial and ongoing checks to ensure they are a fit and proper person to provide support in the health and wellbeing sectors.

Applicants of this programme will need to undergo police vetting and VCA checking.

Immune status requirements as per industry needs.

This programme adheres to and is consistent with the Health and Disability Commissioner (Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers’ Rights) Regulations 1996, the Privacy Act 1993, the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992, and any other legislative or contractual requirements to which the industry or role is subject.


Applicants are required to attend an interview to determine their suitability for the programme. During the interview the applicant will be assessed against the requirements of the Faculty’s policy for students accessing placements in the health context in terms of their suitability for placement in any strand of the programme. At interview the suitability of students to work with vulnerable populations will also be addressed to establish the students’ suitability. Vulnerable Children’s Act will also be addressed during the interview process.

Provisional entry

Students who have attained the age of 20 years and do not hold the minimum entry requirements for a programme will be eligible to be enrolled as a student where their previous educational, work or life experience indicates they have a reasonable likelihood of success. Students who have not attained the age of 20 years and do not hold the required minimum entry requirements for a programme may also be eligible to enrol in exceptional circumstances. Such decisions will be made by the Director/Head of School.

Career opportunities

Community support worker, mental health and addiction support worker, and peer support worker.

Programme structure

Within the first three weeks of commencing your programme, you will need to show evidence of your immunisation status (which will incur a cost) in order to enable you to go out to your practicum placement.

You will need to complete five compulsory courses and four elective courses from your chosen strand (120 credits):
Compulsory courses

721.405 Effective communication (15 credits)

This course will allow you to develop communication styles which respect socio-cultural identity and self-knowledge about other cultural identities.

721.406 Cultural diversity (10 credits)

You will demonstrate an understanding of cultural safety in acknowledging the role of Māori as Tangata Whenua.

721.407 NZ healthcare system (15 credits)

You will demonstrate an understanding of the NZ Healthcare System and relevant legislation.

721.408 Professional practice in the role as a support worker (15 credits)

This course will allow you to demonstrate professionalism in the health and wellbeing setting.

721.409 Safety and quality within the healthcare setting (15 credits)

You will contribute to gaining an understanding of safety and quality within a healthcare setting.

Courses related to your chosen strand

Community healthwork strand

724.426 The role of a community health worker (15 credits)

You will gain personal self-awareness, navigation and facilitation skills to perform effectively in a social services environment.

724.427 Health issues over the lifespan (15 credits)

This course will allow you to develop an understanding of the impacts of health conditions over the lifespan on clients and their whanau.

724.428 Identifying clients and whanau needs in maintaining wellness (10 credits)

You will conduct a needs analysis to identify barriers to clients and their family or whanau from achieving wellness.

724.429 Promoting health and wellness (10 credits)

This course will introduce you to the concept of health and wellness and health promotion strategies to improve health outcomes based on self-management.

Mental health and addiction support strand

724.409 Recovery in the context of mental health support work (10 credits)

This course will allow you to gain awareness and understanding of the principles and barriers to recovery in the mental health and addiction setting.

725.406 Mental health and wellness (10 credits)

You will gain an understanding of mental health and wellness in the New Zealand context.

725.407 The role of the mental health support worker (15 credits)

You will gain awareness and understanding of the mental health and addiction work setting and role of own self in a practice setting.

725.408 Experiencing the mental health setting (15 credits)

This course will allow you to gain a practical experience of working in the mental health and addiction work setting.

Key dates and timetables

To find the key dates and timetables of this programme, please view the health and counselling calendar.

Further training or study

The qualification may lead to further study at Level 5, or bachelor's degrees in related health and wellbeing subject areas. It may also lead into leadership and management roles. 

Information is correct as at February 2021. Programme fees are based on a full-time student and may vary depending on your final selection of courses that make up your programme. To provide you with an indication of costs, the approximate fees quoted in this publication are based on the indicative 2021 fee structure. The indicative programme fees for 2021 do not include the Compulsory Student Services Fee (CSSF). The CSSF is an additional levy to your 2021 programme or course fees. Further information about the CSSF can be found here Programmes stated as eligible for free study in 2021 are based on the 2020 fee structure and subject to funding confirmation for 2021. All fees are in New Zealand Dollars. You will be advised of the current fees at the time of enrolment. All courses and programmes will proceed subject to numbers and academic approval. Manukau Institute of Technology Limited is accredited under the provisions of the Education Act 1989. International students must study in class and will not be able to enrol for online study options.

^Free study for this qualification may be available to you under the government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF). Visit for eligibility criteria and more information. Students must be eligible to study as a domestic student and meet any other entry criteria as required. Some costs may also apply. Free study is subject to funding confirmation.