Our bold plan to provide high impact support to a whopping 23,800 people across Greater Melbourne by 2027 Youth Projects is about to embark on the sharpest growth experienced at the organisation in our almost 40-year history with the expansion of programs into even more areas across Greater Melbourne including Frankston, Dandenong, Cranbourne, Noble Park, Box Hill and Cheltenham (on top of the recently announced expansion into Western Melbourne) from this July. We have been entrusted by the Department of Education, Skills & Employment to deliver Workforce Australia's innovative, new Employability Skills Training program across Western, South-eastern and Inner Melbourne from July 2022 - three regions with the highest youth unemployment in Victoria. The 3-week job-readiness program has already supported more than 1,200 young people since 2017, with 45% of participants achieving meaningful employment and a further 21% re-engaged into formal education. Our teams’ hard work and dedication to young people has led to an increased presence in Inner Melbourne, and now rapid expansion into Western and South-eastern Melbourne to provide opportunities for more than 7,800 people by 2027. All of which will complement the expansion of our Transition to Work program into Western Melbourne - increasing the number of people Youth Projects will support across the regions to a whopping 23,800. To deliver these high impact programs, we are recruiting nearly 70 highly skilled and multidisciplinary operational team members and opening 16 new locations across Greater Melbourne. Local businesses, employers and industry are also set to benefit from the expansion of this program, with direct access to an available pool of people looking for work (with relevant micro credentials) that will contribute to workforce capacities, boost economic recovery, and contribute to connecting local people with local jobs. Youth Projects is currently hiring specialist roles to source internships and work experience placements to support both people looking for meaningful pathways, and local industries. The need to prepare, train and trial jobseekers of all ages is needed now – arguably – more than ever before, especially across regions experiencing industry growth alongside long-term, high rates of youth unemployment. As CEO, Ben Vasiliou shares, “we understand the complexities young people face when searching for meaningful employment. We acknowledge that our programs cannot be set and forget, they need to be adjusted both to changing local labour markets and the actual aspirations and needs of the people looking for work.” Our approach is all about the person looking for work – identifying what they need to succeed, making it real, and making it happen. Enabling this approach will be the use of cutting-edge training and technology including adaptive learning, virtual reality and immersive learning experiences for program participants. To maintain an understanding of participants, analyse the outcomes achieved and effectively measure how our program performs against key features of a successful employment program, we will continue to partner with Social Ventures Australia to utilise their Review Platform. The regular evaluation of our program ensures that we are hitting the mark on current trends experienced by young people, which helps keep them engaged with our content. We are committed to supporting people looking for work across the 3 new regions to develop their workplace employability and digital literacy skills, help improve immediate job search, application, and interview skills, and the foundations for long-term, sustainable career pathways aligned to individuals’ interests and growing industry demands. From July, referrals to Youth Projects’ EST program can be made online for young people to meet their 4-month Centrelink activity activation requirement, or by direct request to their Workforce Australia Enhanced Services Provider or Transition to Work provider. Youth Projects’ new Employability Skills Training programs will be delivered in Box Hill, Cheltenham, Dandenong, Cranbourne, Noble Park, Frankston, Melbourne CBD, Werribee, Melton, Sunshine, and St Albans from 1 July 2022. For all media enquiries, please contact Nic Horton (Marketing & Communications Manager) on 0458 911 299.