Work for the Dole program proving a win-win in Monto.

IntoJob’s latest Work for the Dole program has resulted in an apprenticeship, new career pathways, and Adra Community Hub in Monto, Queensland getting an impressive new garden.

Work for the Dole is a work-like experience program that assists Workforce Australia Participants gain valuable skills and experience to find employment.

During the recent program, four participants, Matthew, Benjamin, Ricky and Lucas were supported to gain their White Card and collaborated to create an impressive community garden. The project involved the construction of a wheelchair access ramp, a garden shed with sliding doors, two sturdy timber picnic tables, planter boxes for the garden, and an undercover area.

Participants learnt hands-on skill in building and construction along with core skills like teamwork and planning. Program Coordinator Kenzee Zielke shared, “The four participants were able to bounce skills and ideas off each other and form a bond through their shared achievements. They walk away with experience with hand tools, new planning, and communication skills, allowing for updated resumes to assist with job opportunities.”

Each participant experienced unique benefits from the program.

The project made a lasting impact on Matthew Teague. His skills impressed a local employer, who offered him an apprenticeship after the project. Similarly, Benjamin Priest was inspired by the community garden and decided to pursue a career in Support Work.

Ricky Walker, a regular volunteer at the Adra Op shop was able to connect with others and build his confidence, leading him to actively seek employment. Lucas Murphy, who had held multiple short-term casual roles, improved his prospects for long-term employment through an updated resume, recent work experience, and accredited training in laboring and gardening.

IntoJob’s National Program Manager, Bruno Bonaccurso said, “This is a fantastic outcome for the participants and the community organisation. It’s so encouraging to see a WFD activity utilised in its true purpose and intent. It’s a real testament to IntoJobs staff’s understanding of participants, the local community, and the pathway opportunities programs like this can provide.”

The Adra Community Hub, connected to the local Adra op shop, provides a space for the community. It offers free tea and coffee, a community library, and a desk area with a donated computer from IntoJobs. Support groups, including men’s nights, ladies’ morning teas, and a disability support group, also utilize the space.

Estelle and David, Owner and Supervisor of the project hosted a thank you BBQ as a grand opening to the community and to highlight the amazing effort participants put in.

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