Pro­gram gives job seek­ers a go

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JOB seek­ers in Ade­laide’s north­ern sub­urbs have moved from un­em­ploy­ment to hav­ing the skills to work in the re­tail sec­tor in just six weeks – through a new train­ing pro­gram.

The 38 job seek­ers took part in the Wool­worths Fresh 40 pro­gram, a pre-em­ploy­ment train­ing ini­tia­tive to help work­ers who have bat­tled un­em­ploy­ment be­cause of the global fi­nan­cial down­turn.

All par­tic­i­pants fin­ished the course and about 60 per cent al­ready have been placed in jobs at Wool­worths stores or other or­gan­i­sa­tions, in­clud­ing Drake Food­land stores and the Aus­tralian Red Cross.

Fed­eral Em­ploy­ment Par­tic­i­pa­tion Min­is­ter Kate El­lis says the pro­gram is one great ex­am­ple of how busi­nesses can work with com­mu­nity groups and gov­ern­ment to im­prove the eco­nomic out­look in ar­eas which tra­di­tion­ally have ex­pe­ri­enced bar­ri­ers in eco­nomic growth.

‘‘When the global fi­nan­cial cri­sis struck, the Aus­tralian Gov­ern­ment re­sponded quickly and iden­ti­fied 20 pri­or­ity em­ploy­ment ar­eas need­ing ex­tra sup­port and at­ten­tion, in­clud­ing the North­ern and West­ern Ade­laide pri­or­ity em­ploy­ment area,’’ she says. Fresh 40 was funded by the fed­eral and state gov­ern­ments.

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