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February 18th, 2010

Bundaberg – Fraser Coast

Keep Australia Working Newsletter        Issue No.3, February 2010

aust gov logo white on black

Keep Australia Working is a Commonwealth Government Initiative to provide on the ground support and focus in twenty priority areas across Australia assessed as at higher ris


k during the current Global Financial Crisis.

BACK TO SCHOOL AND BACK TO WORK Already it is February and we are all well back into work and kids back to school.  It highlights to me how little time we have to ‘get things done’.  Hence, my early priorities for 2010 include working closely with the Keep Australia Working Advisory Committee to finalise and implement the Regional Employment Plan.  This will aim to further mitigate the economic downturn in the region, respond quickly to any other impact, such as job losses, and seeks to establish a collaborative framework to reinvigorate the economy in the Bundaberg -Fraser Coast, mitigating against future downturns.

Importantly, the advisory committee have strongly voiced a focus on providing opportunities to retain our youth and to “talk up” the Wide Bay region to encourage economic growth and investment and hence further job opportunities.


I will be hosting a meeting of hoteliers and restaurateurs to discuss apprenticeship opportunities for young people on Tuesday 9th February 4.00pm in Hervey Bay, Wednesday 10th Feb at 10am in Bundaberg and at 3.00pm in Maryborough.  This is an initiative of the Queensland Hotels Association, in conjunction with William Angliss Institute, with an aim of local employers hearing about the benefits of the additional Apprenticeship Kickstart bonuses available until the end of February. The focus of this meeting will be Chef and Cook apprenticeships. It would be good to see some apprenticeship opportunities come from this meeting.


We strongly encourage employers in the Bundaberg – Fraser Coast to take advantage of this incentive bonus to provide much needed opportunities for youth in our region.

It’s not too late for employers who take on an apprentice into a traditional trade between 1 December 2009 and 28 February 2010 to receive the $3,350 Apprentice Kickstart Bonus from the Australian Government. The Kickstart Bonus targets apprentices aged 19 years and under. To get more information on the Apprentice Kickstart Bonus talk to your local Australian Apprenticeship Centre. If you do not know the name of your local Australian Apprenticeship Centre, contact me and I can put you in touch.


Construction is underway in schools throughout the region for many of the projects approved for funding under the Building the Education Revolution (BER) initiative. I am keen to get local businesses involved in the fit-out and finishing of these projects and I’ve been in contact with the Queensland Government person managing these projects so we can maximise opportunities. Local businesses interested in finding out how to tender for this work should attend the Major Projects Forum (see below).


I’m linking with AIEMnet to present a Major Projects Forum to provide local building and construction businesses and Manufacturing and engineering firms in the supply chain with information on how to engage with and tender for Government business as well as other major projects.
The confirmed dates are 23rd February  in Maryborough and 24th Feb  in Bundaberg with both sessions running from 3.00pm to 5.30pm. There will be a range of speakers from government departments and industry, including Santos, to provide information on major projects and how to become involved. If you are interested, or know of others that might be interested in attending please contact myself or Mark on the numbers listed below.


The latest Intergenerational Report released on 1 February 2010 confirms that Australia has an ageing population which will only increase over the next few decades.   The challenge for Governments and employers is to increase productivity while utilising the available resources.  Certainly keeping older workers in the workforce for longer is an important strategy, however there are many who are not in the workforce who would like to be.

Older workers are a much underutilised resource.  Most employers are aware of the figures on the ageing population, however many, while aware of the benefits of older workers, have not been successful in engaging them in terms of recruitment.

Check out the website , an Australian owned and operated national jobs board with many thousands of registered jobseekers over the age of 45 years searching for employment.

My School

The long awaited My School website went live on 28 January 2010. This site allows schools, parents, students and communities to search the profiles of almost 10,000 Australian schools. My School is run by the independent Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). We all know that the performance of schools is greatly affected by a range of student and school characteristics. The My School website allows and encourages comparisons with schools that are statistically similar in terms of a range of factors known to affect performance. This site allows people to see how their school is doing when compared with similar schools. Education is so important for our young ones. It is up to us as a community to make sure our young people get the best education they can. Have a look at the website at

CENTRELINK JOBS EXPO – UPDATED Below One of the major events for 2010 will be the Bundaberg Centrelink Jobs Expo. The expos are designed to create a ‘jobs marketplace’, bringing together employers and job seekers. They provide information about, and access to, local jobs and job pathways as well as financial management information and information about government and community services. Jobs Expos held in other Priority Employment areas have been hugely successful with many employers and thousands of people attending on the day, with hundreds of jobs on offer.  As soon as we have a confirmed date I will let you know so you can claim the date in your diary.

UPDATE – Date Claimer – We now have a (nearly) confirmed date for the Centrelink Jobs Expo:

May 19 2010.

I’ll provide you with more details closer to the time.  In the meantime, note the date (19th May) in your diary.

Should you have any queries about this event please do not hesitate to call Mark Rowland on the numbers below.  I will provide further updates in future newsletters as they come to hand.


Assessment of the Round Two Jobs Fund applications is nearly complete. We have some excellent applications from our region, so I am hoping for some good news soon. The wait is nearly over.


Another website of interest to parents is the http// website which provides information on different types of child care and how to access help with child care costs There is a database to help find local child care services. There are links to other websites about children’s health and wellbeing, parenting and family support services. The first five years of a child’s life are so important. This is when they do their most important learning. Did you know that children develop most of their intellect, personality and skills by the age of five? Access to high?quality early education is one of the best ways to ensure the best future for our children. Investing in our children benefits them through the development of their cognitive, emotional and social skills and by achieving sound health and well being.


Last month I reported that there will be two new programs commencing in the district to support youth.

I identified that the new providers would be:-

Partnership Broker(PB) – Community Solutions, and  Youth Connections (YC) – Bundaberg Skills Centre.  I should have mentioned that for the PB services Community Solutions will work in a consortium with United Synergies, and for the YC Bundaberg Skills Centre Trading as Impact Make Your mark will work in a consortium with Fraser Coast TESS and South Burnett CTC.  This enables the providers to be able to deliver across the large region that they have to service.

Australian Jobsearch

Did you know that is the country’s largest free online jobs site? While the site will be very familiar to JSA providers and jobseekers, employers may not know that they can also use the site. Unlike other web?based recruitment sites, Australian Jobsearch allows employers to advertise their jobs free of charge. Employers can also manage applications from candidates online through the application tracker tool or browse for staff to fill their jobs. This is the largest free board in Australia and ranks fourth among the top job boards. Visit the site today, register your details (including ABN) and try it out.

GIDARJIL Cultural Festival

To celebrate the symbolic ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Gurang and Gooreng Gooreng

peoples, the Traditional Owners of the Port Curtis Coral Coast Native Title Claim area.

Welcome the cultural exchange Whanau (Family) New Zealand Maori guests from Te Kuiti, and enjoy the traditional and cultural festivities and activities organised for the day.

When: Friday, 5 March 2010

Time: 10am – 4pm

Where: Edina Street, Lions Park

Bundaberg North QLD 4670

Live entertainment: Traditional dance performances,

Indigenous band, Local Indigenous art/artefacts for sale Local informative Expo displays – GBRMPA / DERM Language interpretative display, Children’s activities Traditional Kup-muri lunch

RSVP: 07 4130 7700

by Friday 19 Feb for catering


Feel free to contact myself or Mark if you want to discuss anything to do with the Keep Australia Working Initiative, noting I am on the road most of the time so email is perhaps better for me.

Email contact details:-

phone 0412 772 307 Ph 4617 8609; Mobile 0417 655 962.

Regards, Jason Millward and Mark Rowland



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