A project that is delivering new skills and jobs to young homeless people in Blacktown has been launched under the Federal Labor Government’s Jobs Fund initiative.
The $1.7 million Affordable Housing for Life project was officially opened in Shalvey by Minister for Employment Participation Mark Arbib.
The innovative project, run by Marist Youth Care (MYC), offers eligible young Blacktown people a home, plus training and support to secure employment and develop more productive and positive lives.
“This project will enable at-risk youth in the Blacktown community to get the services they need most from MYC, while doing paid work and on-the-job training in construction,” Senator Arbib said.
“The project addresses the two most significant problems in the area – high youth unemployment and the lack of safe, sustainable and affordable social housing for young people.
“The best thing we can do for a young person is to help find them a job.
“It is a wonderful example of how well-targeted, local investment can lead to real jobs, while helping the most vulnerable in our communities.
“This is a flexible approach to youth homelessness and it will focus strongly on meeting the overall needs of each young person on the project.”
Senator Arbib said the Jobs Fund was supporting and creating jobs through projects which build community and social infrastructure in areas most affected by the global recession.
Federal Labor Candidate for Chifley Ed Husic attended the announcement and welcomed the clever use of the funding.
“It’s a smart way to marry up government funding with local initiative – delivered by our area’s youth, for our area’s youth.” said Ed.
“I imagine in years to come, this project will bring enormous pride to all of those who worked on the construction of these homes.
“Because people will be able to see for themselves the good that comes from the hard work of our young locals. Great idea.”
To date, two sites in Shalvey and Hebersham have been secured for the project. The first intake of young trainees has completed pre-employment training and started building works on the Shalvey site in late April.
The $1.7 million funding was provided under the Local Jobs stream of Jobs Fund. The project will create six jobs, three traineeships and 16 work experience positions.
Since its inception in April this year, the project has created three traineeships, two apprenticeships and four long-term jobs.
The Federal Labor Government’s Jobs Fund is funding 225 projects worth $171 million which will support 7,801 jobs, 3,017 work experience positions and 2,347 training places.
The Jobs Fund was negotiated with the support of Senator Stephen Fielding and the Australian Greens.
For more information about the Jobs Fund program, visit the Keep Australia Working website;