training program that prepared residents to re-enter the workforce has helped
secure jobs for several participants.
to Employment initiative Opportunity East has celebrated the success of nine
students who completed the Certificate II in Production Horticulture course.
participants formally graduated at a ceremony at Encompass’ working farm, The
Paddock, in Leopold on Friday.
six-month course focused on reskilling, retraining and rebuilding participants’
confidence, so they were best placed to access future study or work.
The majority of
graduates were celebrating not only their new qualifications but also their
move into new careers or business opportunities.
will enter a new phase of their working life, gaining employment with Belmont
Timber and Faggs Mitre 10.
The course was
strongly supported by the hardware, timber and nursery business, which offered
store visits, guest speakers and career advice to participants.
Two other women
are committed to launching their own gardening and horticulture-related small
businesses, with one male graduate securing a position with Barwon Coast
Committee of Management.
participant is keen to undertake further study in the disability sector.
hosted participants one day per week at The Paddock and provided the lead
trainer for the course.
provided access for a wide range of residents in the eastern suburbs and
northern Bellarine areas, who were looking to advance their learning or find
who ranged in ages from 19 through to their 60s, lived in suburbs from
Whittington through to Indented Head.
East is part of the Whittington Works Alliance.
It is a
partnership project delivered by The Gordon and the City of Greater Geelong
that is funded by the Victorian Government.
Greater Geelong Mayor Stephanie Asher
the Opportunity East graduates on the significant effort they have made to
create positive change in their lives. Through a
supportive and encouraging environment, long-term jobseekers have learnt
industry-relevant skills that will benefit both them and local employers. The program worked to create new pathways for
residents and it is great to see they embraced the opportunity to further their
education and job prospects.