Our Central region

In our Central Region, there is nothing more important to us than the oranga (wellness and wellbeing) of our people. We are a principles-led and values-based region that aims to recognise the mana and tapu of everyone. 

Our Region is made up of three districts: Waikato, Rotorua/Taupō/Tokoroa, and Bay of Plenty. Across these districts, we have teams at our three prison sites (Tongariro, Waikeria and Spring Hill), 21 community corrections sites, and a regional office based in Hamilton. 

What's happening in our Central Region?

Starting out

We are focused on giving our new recruits the best possible start to their careers with Ara Poutama Aotearoa. You are welcomed into a whānau where you will be supported to grow and develop professionally, and be a part of a culture where the health, safety and wellbeing of all people is a top priority.

Strengthening mental health

Hikitia is a new mātauranga Māori mental health and addiction service for tāne in Central Region prisons – Waikeria Prison, Tongariro Prison and Spring Hill Corrections Facility. Developed in partnership through a co-design process with Mana Whenua – Ahi Kā and Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand, Waikato, Hikitia will be the first of its kind in Aotearoa and is a key enabler of Ara Poutama Aotearoa’s Hōkai Rangi strategy.

Waikeria Prison Development

A new 500-bed facility, with an additional 100-bed mental health and addiction unit is currently under construction at Waikeria Prison. The development represents a significant investment in strengthening mental health services and providing more rehabilitation, education and training space, and opportunities for people in prison. The new facilities will provide a safe, secure, and respectful environment for staff, people in prison, and their whānau.

Why move to Central?


The Central North Island is an adventure and sporting mecca, offering some of the best natural attractions in Aotearoa. Enjoy a range of outdoor recreational activities, including fishing, jetboating, bike trails, hiking, and not to mention our world-famous ski fields. Or capitalise on the Central location and trip to places like Auckland, Tauranga, Raglan or Rotorua, without spending half the time in the car!

Be a part of the change

It takes a village to do what we do. Explore our range of teams to learn more about the roles within Ara Poutama Aotearoa.

Rārangi whakamua - Custodial

A career inside in our custodial environment means working face-to-face with people who have offended. As a custodial staff member it’s your role to ensure safety and improve the oranga of prisoners’ while they are with us.

Hauora me te Oranga - Health & Wellbeing

Working in an interdisciplinary team of health practitioners, we provide a range of health and well-being screening, assessments and treatments for people inside prison and out in the community.

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Enter your details below to find out about the latest vacancies here in the Central Region

  • 1. Apply
  • 2. Checks & Screening
  • 3. Meeting you
  • 4. Final Checks
  • 5. Getting started

Apply online through our website - you'll answer relevant screening questions and upload your CV and a Cover Letter.

Because of the nature of our work and the high standards of integrity we carry out a number of checks. The types depend on what role you're applying for but typically include criminal conviction checks, an online interview and psychometric assessments.

We'll want to meet you in person and will invite you to come in. We'll do this through an interview, assessment centre, or an onsite job preview. 

We'll work with you to finalise details which may including Medical, Fitness and Drug testing.  We’ll also reach out to your referees to talk to them about your previous work and the skills you have.

Welcome to the whānau! From here we'll sort out getting you ready to start work. For all of our offender facing roles, this includes a comprehensive training programme to support offenders to change their behaviour and to keep yourself and your new team safe.