Wednesday, April 02, 2014

New program to help Indigenous kids get work

After success in Darwin, Mission Australia has extended its Indigenous Youth Career Pathways Program (IYCP) to Alice Springs.

The program aims to increase the number of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in fulltime work or study after school.

“Every student in the Indigenous Youth Career Pathways Program has a dedicated mentor who will support them through the program,” NT Area Manager Sue Kendrick said.

“It’s similar to a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship in that participants will learn a trade or gain a Certification Two, Three or Four in their chosen field while they complete school.”

Open to Indigenous students in years 10 to 12, Temea Prior and Kaitlyn Armstrong are the first Alice Springs students in the IYCP program.

Alice Outcomes year 11 student Temea is completing a Certificate Three in Community Services with the Gap Youth and Community Centre while St Phillip’s College classmate Kaitlyn is working as a Trainee Broadcaster with CAAMA Radio.

“It can be difficult for students to break into the workforce and I’m really proud to be able to provide a stepping stone for Temea,” Gap Youth and Community Centre CEO Michelle Krauer said.

“The ICYP program has a great support system with not only Mission Australia, but Temea’s school and Charles Darwin University.

“Temea is already growing into her position, relates well to our staff and is learning what’s involved with being a worker.”

IYCP is a federally funded program that provides employers with up to $4750 in incentives for business expenses under the Apprenticeship Scheme Program.

Mission Australia said its currently looking for more Territory business to come on board the Indigenous Youth Career Pathways Program.

“We have 120 students across the Territory interested in the program with only 38 in Darwin signed and enrolled and now two in Alice, Ms Kendrick said.

“Our mentors work closely with any business taking on an apprentice or trainee, and last year we had three graduates secure fulltime work with their employer.”

Businesses interested in finding out more about the Indigenous Youth Career Pathways can visit or call 8935 0900. 

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