Upskill opportunities available for unemployed

By Morgan Dyer

With new Australian Bureau of Statistics data revealing Moira Shire suffered the biggest drop in employment in rural and regional Victoria, Cobram Community House wants residents to know there is help at hand.

House members are encouraging locals to think about future upskilling courses and how they can build their skills for future opportunities.

Although the service, which aims to provide quality, affordable training and learning opportunities to the people of Cobram and district, has had to put some new face-to-face training on hold due to COVID-19 restrictions, existing accredited courses are still running with plans for 2021 training on track.

The house offers a range of training programs which can be delivered online and face-to-face.

House manager Sally Bate said members wanted to hear from community members as they were looking at extending their course list.

“We are always taking expressions of interest and any training inquiries people may have,” she said.

“If we can’t offer it then we work closely with other local learning centres and can help point people in the right direction.”

The alarming ABS figures, which include City of Greater Shepparton and Campaspe Shire, revealed youth employment (15 to 24) was hardest hit with the unemployment rate sitting at about 30 per cent – the highest in regional Victoria.

Ms Bate said people of all ages, backgrounds and lifestyles train at the centre.

“The more skills you hold, the more attractive you are to an employer,” she said.

“We understand employers are looking for tangible skills and what we try to do it is offer those skills to our students who will then take them and make a smooth transition into a workplace,” she said.

From short first aid certificates, certificates in general education to diplomas in early childhood education, the centre has a range of courses for people looking to upskill, retrain or just to fill extra time.

The house also run digital literacy training for older people which aims to get them safely on-line and is a gentle way to build new skills.

“We are also looking to promote an English as second language class as well as an adult literacy class, so if there are people wanting to build their English language skills, this could be a great time to do it,” Ms Bate said.

Local businesses are also encouraged to express their thoughts about courses which would make future employees more attractive.

For more information, contact Cobram Community House on 5872 2224.

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