[Sub ID 4863] Peer to Peer Connection (Jobs Australia)

Submission ID: 4863
Organisation name: Jobs Australia
Contact name: Mr David Thompson
State: VIC
Contact email: jmercer@ja.com.au

Which priority group of the Try, Test and Learn Fund does your idea support?
Young carers

What need or issue are you trying to address?
The emerging task economy presents distinctive employment opportunities for young carers.

  • New technologies are transforming the labour market, creating new job opportunities with low barriers to entry via digital platforms like Airtasker, Freelancer and (soon to be launched) Care Interchange. A recent Upworker survey found that 4.1m Australians, or 32% of the workforce, freelanced in 2014-15.
  • These digital platforms present distinctive opportunities for young carers, who face unique barriers to employment. The flexible nature of task-based work is appealing for those whose caring responsibilities make it difficult to sustain normal working hours.

However, young carers often lack the knowledge, skills and social connections to access these opportunities.

  • Young carers are enterprising and resilient, yet are often unable to articulate their capabilities effectively to employers. Limited time to pursue education and employment and disconnectedness from school and community present significant barriers to engaging in traditional work. Isolation from peers can make it difficult to access existing resources that support the learning of young carers.
  • There is also a challenge in helping young carers understand how the nature of work is rapidly changing and how they can articulate their strengths to find work in the modern labour market.

What is your idea?
Over 12 months, the Peer to Peer Carer Connection (PPCC) program will engage 30-50 young carers with the task economy. Participants will work together at a physical and virtual hub to learn new skills, find meaningful work and build capability while completing tasks. The physical hub will be resourced with the necessary equipment to help young carers complete task-based work.

Work opportunities will be delivered through:

  1. Existing platforms, such as Airtasker, Freelancer and (soon to be launched) Care Interchange.
  2. Socially minded businesses, sourced through partner organisations, which provide tasks directly to participants.

PPCC will provide in-person and on-line supports to help young carers build capability:

  1. A program manager will oversee day-to-day operations and business development.
  2. A youth worker will be responsible for wraparound support and recruitment.
  3. Task economy super-users will guide young carers in the requirements for success including resilient support.
  4. Navigators will play a supervisory role for participants and provide logistical support.

Program supports will also provide learning resources to build capability, including existing resources for young carers and online courses to gain micro-credentials. This will provide flexible support for participants who find it difficult to access traditional learning channels.