Innovation is in our DNA.The majority of our members initiate pilot programs to test solutions to local issues. These findings are shared across the network to multiply the number of people helped across the country. Here's a snapshot of some of the successful local innovations this year.
The Bike Rescue Partnership Project - Bridging the Gap (WA)
This project successfully re-engages young people who have disengaged from school. Participants complete a Cert I Work Preparation, giving them employability skills while being mentored to gain further qualifications or transition into work. The "hook" that keeps young people interested is that they learn how to restore bicycles. The first bike they restore is given to their chosen charity, making them feel like valued members of society. They then keep the second bike they restore. A highlight for many is the two night camp where they ride their restored bikes along the Munda Biddi trail. Since the project started in 2013, 50 young people have participated, with 75 per cent actively involved in education, training or employment six months after they completed the Bike Rescue Partnership Project.
ACspresSO Café - ACSO (Vic)
ACspresSO Café is an innovative social enterprise training café that provides an opportunity to develop real vocational skills, work experience and qualifications in the hospitality industry to unemployed former offenders and those at risk of offending. Dubbed "Coffee with Conviction", ACspresSO has employed a trained barista and trainees rotate through the café, developing employment skills that they can take out into the world of work. In the next year, ACspresSO is aiming to enrol and graduate over 30 trainees and place over 90 per cent into sustainable employment through the venture.
Strengthening Local Workforces Program - BUSY At Work (Qld)
The Strengthening Local Workforces Program (SLWP) is a partnership between the Queensland Gas Company (QGC) and BUSY At Work that supports local communities, businesses and individuals in developing sustainability by matching apprentices and trainees with suitable local businesses outside the resources sector. The program was developed to address community concerns that local resource projects would create labour shortages (affecting service provision) and drain skilled labour from local businesses. SLWP supports local businesses in these communities to develop a labour force; contributes to the sustainability of communities in these regions; and creates job opportunities for individuals. This program has generated more than 200 new jobs in a range of sectors, including hospitality, administration, health and automotive services.
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