THE Cairns region has been chosen to trial a new pilot programme enabling businesses and community organisations to apply for support to boost the skills of local young people.
“Our Government is looking at innovative ways to address youth unemployment by undertaking two youth pilot programs – Training for Employment Scholarships (TES) and the Youth Employment Pathways (YEP),” said Federal Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch.
“The YEP program, run through the Industry Skills Fund, will be trialled in Cairns and is a new way of delivering skilled young employees to businesses in the Far North.
“It will meet the needs of business while also helping young people to get back into school, start vocational education and training (VET) or move into the workforce.
“These initiatives are not just about helping local businesses and young people, but also the community as a whole, particularly at this time of high youth unemployment.”
Under the Training for Employment Scholarships, being trialled in 11 regions, up to 7,500 scholarships of up to $7500 for youths aged 18-24 are available to micro, small and medium businesses who hire an unemployed person for 12 months to support the costs of training that makes them work ready.
The Youth Employment Pathways programme, being trialled in 21 regions, will provide assistance to 3,000 youth who are not in work, training or school. Eligible community service organisations can receive funding of up to $2,000 to support 15 to 18 year olds, to get back into school, start VET or move into the workforce.
“Trialling the pilot programmes in selected regions ensures future youth programmes are effective and are linked to outcomes. Unlike Labor we are not training for training’s sake but investigating the optimal ways to get young unemployed Australians into work,” Mr Entsch said.
Far North businesses and community service organisations have until 29 February 2016 to apply through the online application form. The eligibility area includes the whole of Cairns, as well as the region north to Mossman/Port Douglas, west to Mareeba and Atherton, and south to Innisfail and Hinchinbrook.
For more information, or to apply, visit www.business.gov.au/youthstream or call 13 28 46.