Headspace Ballarat Launches New Youth Employment Scheme | The mail


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A NEW employment program from headspace Ballarat aims to give young people more control over determining their career paths with the aim of improving retention and community engagement. The Youth Employment Program (known as YEP) helps young people who have mental health barriers to work find their right job and what they need to do to get there – rather than finding a job. Sam Wills, youth skills training specialist at Headspace Ballarat, said employment programs were not “rocket science”, but this new approach tended to go against intuition. traditional. In the past, Mr Wills might have tended to focus on secure housing and sorting out other factors before a job search or just trying to find a solid job for a youngster to start with. Now he says yes. Vocational specialists and mental health clinicians work with a young person to envision what is possible. As soon as a young person is hired, a quick job search is underway and within a month general industry presentations linking a young person to their career interests are made. “Some ideas may be unrealistic, but telling a young person isn’t always helpful,” Mr Wills said. “We have good measures to make sure that we don’t become an obstacle to their employment. They are experts in their lives, they know when they are ready and we go with that.” We work with their preferences, for example, having a conversation with a graphic designer and learning about the training, skills and preparation needed for this job… It’s all about professional awareness and knowledge. “We discuss, guide and test to see if the work matches their preferences.” IN OTHER NEWS YEP is based on an evidence-based program from the USA. The personalized approach also helps navigate Centrelink, job search strategies, interview preparation and follow-up support once in a job. There was no time limit for a young person in the program because Mr Wills said it was important for young people to know they were worth it. Interested participants or partner employers can contact headspace Ballarat or email [email protected] If you see this message, you are a loyal digital subscriber to The Courier, as we have made this story available only to subscribers. Thank you so much for your support and for allowing us to continue to tell the story of Ballarat. We appreciate your support for journalism in our great city.



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