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Secondary school students gain support for disability sector careers

Friday – 18 August 2017

Eighteen secondary school students in northern Adelaide are being connected to career opportunities in the disability sector through a new South Australian Government Disability Workforce Project.

Year 11 and 12 students from six Northern Adelaide high schools are studying a Certificate III in Community Services through a school-based traineeship as part of the project.

As well as accredited training and work placements with community organisations, including disability sector employers, students receive case management and structured workplace mentoring support.

The project is supported by the South Australian Government’s Disability Workforce Hub in northern Adelaide, a service that connects job seekers with local employers, training providers and employment to help fill local job opportunities in the expanding disability sector.

About 6000 new jobs will be created across the state over the next few years to support the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) rollout, including up to 2000 in the Northern Adelaide region.

The Disability Workforce Project is delivered in partnership with Relationships Australia SA, Maxima, the Department for Education and Child Development (DECD) and the City of Salisbury through their youth initiative, Twelve25. In addition to the project, the students attended a half-day ProjectABLE workshop this week, delivered by the National Disability Services (NDS) and funded by the Federal Government.

At the workshop, people with disability talked about their experience, and helped students learn about life with a disability, the importance of social inclusion and what they can do to make a difference.

Background

The six schools involved in the project are Craigmore High School, Parafield Gardens High School, Para Hills High School, Paralowie High School, Playford International College and Salisbury East High School.

Northern Adelaide is the first region in South Australia for adults to enter the NDIS and began to rollout for people aged 18 to 64 from 1 July 2017.

It is estimated that one in five new jobs created in Australia over the next few years will need to be in the disability care sector.

The State Government is funding Disability Workforce Projects that meet the specific skills and employment needs of disability sector employers who have identified job opportunities including personal support workers, allied health, client services and administration.

Over three years, the South Australian Government is investing up to $12 million in special workforce development initiatives to build the disability sector workforce.

The Disability Workforce Hub in Northern Adelaide, hosted by Northern Futures, is part of the South Australian Government’s workforce strategy to develop a skilled workforce and ensure the State is prepared for the NDIS rollout.

For more information about the Disability Workforce Hubs visit mysupportmychoice.sa.gov.au/working-in-the-disability-sector/jobs-and-skills

Quotes attributable to Higher Education and Skills Minister Susan Close

This Disability Workforce Project is helping students become aware of career opportunities and pathways to jobs in the disability sector that will help meet the demand for extra services from the NDIS roll out.

The project complements the workshop which also supports students to learn more about the range of roles available in the disability sector.

Being able to provide employers with appropriately skilled people is central to the State Government’s skills, training and employment strategy, WorkReady.