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Powell Media Release – Forest work opens opportunities for hinterland jobseekers (30 May 2012)

A high percentage of participants on a State Government funded employment project have found on-going work following completion of the Maleny based initiative.

 The Hinterland Business Centre in Maleny received $304,540 to run the Hinterland Employment & Training and Flood Recovery Solutions project in August 2011, enabling the group to coordinate paid work placements for up to 16 job seekers.

 Minister for Education, Training and Employment John-Paul Langbroek said the project has helped repair flood damaged areas of the hinterland and also helped the jobseekers find new work.

 “I am pleased to announce that seven workers will graduate from the second phase of this project on Thursday at a ceremony atMaryCairncrossPark,” Mr Langbroek said.

“In the first round, which finished late last year, seven of the eight participants found on-going paid work as a result of the skills and confidence the project gave them, and I believe the second just completed project is producing similar results.

 “I congratulate and thank the Hinterland Business Centre (HBC) for managing this project so well and for working so hard to find work for the project participants.

 “The State Government needs partners like HBC to help it achieve its desired target of 4% unemployment – organisations that go the extra yard to place jobseekers in full-time paid positions.

 “The project also achieved some great results – eight workers have worked withQueenslandParksand Wildlife Service to repair tracks and bridges in the well used parks in the region, while other workers have been employed with Barung Landcare and some workers also were placed with HBC,” the Minister said.

 Thursday’s graduation will be held at The Café at Mary Cairncross, 148 Mountain View Road at a morning tea starting at 9.30am.

 HBC ManagerEdith-Ann Murraysaid the workers deserved the results they achieved.

 “Largely we found the workers to be practical people who got on and did a great job,” Ms Murray said.

 “In the first group we had a number of farmers who had lost work due to flooding so they are naturally people who know how to get on with things and use initiative.

 “Some of these are now working within national parks out west, while one member of the second intake has been offered an Assistant Nursery Manager’s job at Barung Landcare.

 “We achieved 87% employment outcomes from the first group and it looks like being pretty much the same for the second group.

 “This is the best program that I have come across achieving fantastic outcomes and changing lives – even the lives of people who don’t end up in employment are changed for the better as a result of participating on the program.

 “I thank the State Government for this initiative and look forward to continued successes with similar projects in the future,” Ms Murray said.

 Member for Glass House, Andrew Powell MP, is well aware of the benefits these projects have within small communities.

 “It is thanks to the efforts of groups like the HBC and in this case Edith-Ann and her team that ensure our jobseekers have access to the best opportunities. 

 “It gave me great pleasure to recently acknowledge one of the HBC team as part of the 2012 Glass House Volunteer Awards.  They certainly perform a great service to our community and I thank them for their dedication and commitment to this region.

 The funding was provided under the Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative which will invest $104 million to assist an estimated 24,000 people in 2011/12.

 For more information on Skilling Queenslanders for Work, visit or call 1300 369 925.






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