[Sub ID 4594] Social Enterprise Hub (The Skills Generator)

Submission ID: 4594
Organisation name: The Skills Generator
Contact name: Mr Nick Humphreys
State: NSW
Contact email: nick@theskillsgenerator.com.au

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

What need or issue are you trying to address?
The need that we have identified is that of a stepping stone or transition model which supports, engages and increases the workforce capacity of young school leavers. Our organisation delivers welfare programs and alternative schooling on the central coast to many representatives of this cohort and so it is evident daily, that there is a lack of meaningful support programs that builds on a confidence developed in schooling and translates that to confidence in entering the workforce. These two stages of a young person’s life are significantly different and schooling rarely prepares an individual, with significant barriers, well for the demands of working life.

Young students at risk of long term unemployment, of which there are many across the central coast, are challenged with greater barriers around family support, finances, mental health and accommodation to name but a few. These barriers make the transition all the more difficult.

Too often students experience significant anxiety when contemplating the move from ‘student’ to ’employee’ and there are no business models that are specifically designed to enable these individuals a working environment where they can be given time to transition and develop with support.

What is your idea?
We propose to establish a social enterprise hub on the central coast that will act as a ‘soft employment’ experience for students not yet completely work ready. Having experience already in delivering social enterprises we will incubate market competitive enterprises with the full engagement of the students from conception to operational delivery.

An initial social enterprise concept is around a ‘deconstruction’ business which would collect valuable building materials during the deconstruction process, whereby diverting them from landfill. The materials, primarily hardwood timber, will then be processed (de-nailed), warehoused and ultimately sold to either wholesale or retail customers. There is also scope for manufacturing our own hardwood products to sell.

This enterprise will require staffing in all areas of operation including:
– Onsite labouring
– Material processing, and warehousing
– Wholesale sales
– Retail sales
– Administration
– Marketing and advertising
– Online and social media creation

In partnership with an existing Asbestos Removal and Demolition business the high risk activities will be executed by them under there respective licences.

From this initial idea we would look to launch multiple social enterprises engaging greater numbers of young students as we grow. We also manage the Structured Work Placement contract for Dep Education on the central coast so facilitating student placements in the respective work areas mentioned above would not be difficult.

Our intention would be that the placement and employment of students within the enterprises would be temporary as we assist their attainment of meaningful employment with external employers. This would make way for new students who are seeking support in their transition from school to employment.