[Sub ID 4045] Volunteer job matching and development training (Ku-ring-gai Hornsby Volunteer Service)

Submission ID: 4045
Organisation name: Ku-ring-gai Hornsby Volunteer Service
Contact name: Ms Robin Hall
State: NSW
Contact email: rhall@kmc.nsw.gov.au
Contact number: 02 9424 09

Which priority group of the Try, Test and Learn Fund does your idea support?
Young parents, Young students at risk of long-term unemployment

What need or issue are you trying to address?
Gaining work experience is difficult for recipients of Parenting payment, Carers payment or those who have been receiving a study payment. Evidence on DSS website of long-term unemployment in these groups, and in a number of Australian and US studies. Finding sufficient numbers of volunteers to fill roles in various support services in Hornsby and Ku-ring-gai is challenging. Statistics on volunteering show a recent decline in the numbers of volunteers. Those from the target groups, and NFPs that engage volunteers could each benefit by having a more structured program of volunteers working towards paid employment. Volunteers from the target groups would gain valuable skills and experience which they could use in accessing paid employment, and the NFPs would have increased capacity to provide their services. Support would be provided for the volunteers in terms of training, and for the NFPs by having a supervisor or support person for the volunteer.

What is your idea?
Facilitate volunteer participation in local NFPs by those from the target groups. Volunteers will gain work skills and experience, potentially leading to paid work in their chosen field. Identify industries where there are jobs available, e.g aged care, gardening, food service, disability services, retail, ESL teaching, childcare. Then identify volunteer opportunities that would provide the skills needed in above industries such as: Assistant at Day Centre in aged care facility or on shopping bus for elderly, gardener, kitchen assistant, helping people with a disability on bus outings or with creative activities, helper at ESL classes, helper at children’s playgroup. Training will be provided that is relevant to volunteer roles and subsequent paid work, as well as training in employability and life skills. Additional training and practical experience in hospitality for volunteers from the target groups, such as barista courses and café service in a pop-up café providing cheap or free coffee and cakes. Provide a child minding service (within regulations), with volunteers from the target groups and a supervisor. Thus, some in the target groups can gain experience in childcare, and those who want to gain experience in another field will have child care provided while they are volunteering.