Focus on future for apprentices 

By Jennifer Kent

AN EMPHASIS on supporting underutilised cohorts who experience greater disadvantage to participating in the labour market is the focus of the latest round of state funding under the Queensland Government’s Group Training Organisation Pre-Apprenticeship Program.  

Up to 244 pre-apprentices across the state will benefit under the program designed to be a stepping stone to a career in construction, engineering or hospitality.  

Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said round three of the program saw 11 organisations across the state share in approximately $6 million in funding.  

“Under the Good People. Good Jobs: Queensland Workforce Strategy the Pre-Apprenticeship Program has been expanded to deliver an additional funding round,” Minister Farmer said. 

“The latest round is a more targeted program that has a stronger focus on supporting underutilised cohorts who experience greater disadvantage to participating in the labour market. 

 “It includes women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, people with disability and culturally and linguistically diverse people. 

 “Through the extension of this program, Group Training Organisations will continue to support Queenslanders through a pre-apprenticeship pathway which will see these vital cohorts get the necessary supports to commence an apprenticeship.” 

Minister Farmer said the Group Training Organisation Pre-Apprenticeship Program has projects from two previous funding rounds currently being delivered. 

“Both those existing funding rounds are funded through the $200 million Future Skills Fund which significantly invested in the training and skills of Queenslanders,” Minster Farmer said. 

 “Through both funding rounds, 14 Group Training Organisations are supporting over 400 Queenslanders to complete a Certificate I in construction, engineering, automotive or hospitality and support them to transition into an apprenticeship. 

 “It provides Queenslanders who aspire to undertake an apprenticeship with short-term paid employment while undertaking Certificate I Traineeships in Hospitality, Construction, Engineering or Automotive, positioning them to realise their long-term vocational career goals.”