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Transition & Work

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Stories

The ABC’s take on what the Budget means for young people

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In its overview of what the 2015–16 Federal Budget holds for various sectors, the ABC has judged the results for young people as ‘neutral’.

There are certainly some positive initiatives, such as the new Youth Employment Strategy, a package of measures designed to help young people transition into the workforce, and the measures to assist employers take on apprentices. But there are still some unhelpful rulings such as the waiting period for young people to access welfare payments, and the lack of detail surrounding the proposed higher education changes.

Check out the details on the ABC's Federal Budget winners and losers site. 


Australia’s youth peak delivers its verdict on the 2015–16 Federal Budget

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The Australian Youth Affairs Coalition (AYAC) has ‘cautiously welcomed’ the Federal Budget.

While AYAC supports aspects of the new Youth Employment Strategy, it says it is still unclear whether the new measures will adequately replace the youth support programs, such as Youth Connections, that were defunded in the 2014 Federal Budget. 

Read AYAC’s full statement on the Budget here.


A summary of BSL’s Youth Collaboration Trial

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The Brotherhood of St Laurence (BSL) has just published a summary paper covering their Youth Collaboration Trial (YCT), a service integration model to help young people aged 15 to 24 transition into work.

The YCT covered the 18 months from June 2013 to December 2014 and sought to link employment, education and training services like Youth Connections and Job Services Australia using existing government funding. The YCT trial was based in Frankston, Craigieburn and Melbourne’s western suburbs. It found that the five main benefits of collaboration between service providers were:

  • helping youth services make sense of a complex system;
  • improving communication and understanding between service providers;
  • avoiding duplication of services and thereby making best use of scarce resources;
  • the ability to offer a number of services that meet young people’s ‘broader needs’; and
  • preventing young people from falling through the gaps in the system.

Another chief finding from the trial is that ‘it takes time to build the strong relationships that are needed to harness existing community resources’. Many of the collaborations begun during the trial are continuing into 2015.

Download the summary paper, Working together: A report on the Youth Collaboration Trial, here.

    

Source:BSL Update, May 2015.

New resources available to teach young people about agriculture

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The Australian Government has launched a series of resources for use in schools designed to teach students about the nation’s agricultural sector; the resources showcase the diversity and economic importance of ‘food and fibre production’ in Australia.

The set of more than 75 online resources was launched in late May, and is available for download from the Primary Industries Education Foundation Australia website. 

The resources are part of the Government’s $2 million Agriculture in Education initiative. Find out more about this initiative here.


Source: Australian Government media release, 18 May 2015.

New website encourages young women to consider ‘non-traditional’ careers

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‘Girls can do anything’ is the message from a new website which features female role models from male-dominated professions and provides information about career paths into these industries. The website was created by economic Security4Women (eS4W), a national alliance of women’s organisations.

Young women can find a wealth of information about a broad range of careers on the website, including pathways to those professions and a comprehensive list of links to relevant national and state-based organisations that provide training and/or support. The website creators are also actively seeking women willing to be included as role models on the site, particularly those working as skilled tradespersons and those in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics industries. 

For more information, go to the girls can do anything website.


Source:CommunityNet e-news, 20 May 2015.

Website offers a launchpad to adult life for young people with autism

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In late April, Autism Spectrum Australia (Aspect) launched a world-first website called Launchpad that offers young people with autism and their families resources to help these young people transition from school to adult life.

Information on the Launchpad website is divided into the following categories: work; study; social life; becoming independent; health; advocacy and disclosure; and funding support and legal matters.

Content for the website was written by Seana Smith, a writer and a co-author of the original version of the Australian autism handbook, and Vicki Gibbs, a clinical psychologist with Autism Spectrum Australia. Both women have adult children with autism and have themselves faced the challenges of  sourcing information and resources to help their children make the transition from school life to adulthood. This website seeks to make that process easier by gathering all the relevant information in one place.

The website was edited by Thomas Kuzma, a young person with autism who is a blogger for Aspect.

Click here to visit the Launchpad website. 


Source:Aspect website, 25 May 2015

The new Youth Employment Strategy

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The 2015–16 Federal Budget included provision for a new government-funded Youth Employment Strategy, which is designed to give young people the skills and assistance to get into the workforce.

The new Youth Employment Strategy has been allocated $330 million in funding in order to help specific groups of young people transition into work; it aims to stave off the risk of long-term unemployment for young people who are in danger of becoming welfare dependent.

The funding will cover a $212 million Youth Transition to Work program, which will help young people who are disengaged from work. Under this program support will be provided by community-based organisations that already have a proven track record in assisting youth to help young people ‘find and maintain’ a job, an apprenticeship or a traineeship. Support for young people in this category could include one-on-one mentoring, confidence building, literacy and numeracy training, as well as help to overcome personal barriers to entering the workforce or education.

In addition to the Youth Transition to Work program, there will also be a $14 million Early School Leavers program and Intensive Support Trials for Vulnerable Job Seekers ($106 million). This last program will include assistance for disadvantaged young people with mental health concerns as well as vulnerable young migrants.

The Youth Employment Strategy replaces, in some measure, the Youth Connections program that had similar aims and was highly successful.

Commentators in the social sector have voiced their concerns about the gap in assistance for young people: Youth Connections had its funding withdrawn last December and it will be several months before the Youth Employment Strategy is up and running, leaving young people in limbo with no current assistance. For example, CEO of Mission Australia, Catherine Yeomans, said: ‘We could have made a seamless transition from Youth Connections to a new program rather than losing staff through redundancies, and losing skills and expertise from the sector. But at least the government has recognised its mistake’.

For more detail on the Youth Employment Strategy, go to the Australian Government Budget website.   


Source:Australian Government Budget website, viewed 26 May 2015

Transitioning vulnerable migrant youth into education

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The Australian Government has just announced that it will make money available to smooth the transition of vulnerable migrants aged under 25 into education, work or socialisation programs; the move is part of a push to prevent the radicalisation of young people and stop them from disengaging from society.

The initiative, costing $22 million, is called the Transition Support for Young Refugees and Other Vulnerable Young Migrants program. It has four components:

  • Partnerships for employment: support for over 2,000 young refugees and vulnerable migrants to undertake job readiness programs to improve their work readiness, gain work experience and to fill existing job vacancies;
  • Strong connections to education: assistance for up to 1,500 young refugees and vulnerable migrants to remain engaged with education through addressing and building self-confidence and social connections;
  • Sports engagement for youth: support for up to 10,000 young people a year to participate in sporting activities delivered by community groups and sporting organisations to help young people build social connections and confidence beyond their own community; and
  • Increased vocational opportunities: design of an innovative partnership-based model and piloting of new arrangements to create pathways for young refugees and vulnerable migrants to strengthen and obtain vocational skills. Up to 300 young people will be eligible to benefit.

 Most components of this program will commence in January 2016; the Vocational opportunities initiative will begin later in 2016.


Source:Australian Government media release, 16 May 2015.

Don’t forget to register for the upcoming NCVER conference!

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The 24th National Vocational Education and Training Research Conference: ‘No Frills’ is taking place in early July and now is the time to register.

With over 50 presentations, the program features three key areas vital to developing the VET system and meeting future skills demand:

  • Youth: engaging, inspiring and supporting students to realise their potential
  • Pathways: transitioning through education and training into the workforce
  • Skills: working with industry and employers to improve education and training.

Register now for this conference, which will take place on 6–8 July 2015, at the University of Western Sydney, Parramatta campus.

Online registration is available here.


Source:email from NCVER, 27 May 2015.