Indigenous workers join WestConnex through the Workplace Readiness Program

supplied by Lee Robson 


13 Indigenous workers begin new roles with John Holland CPB Contractors on the Rozelle Interchange Project. Image: supplied

Goanna Services, Asuria and the Aboriginal Advancement Alliance (AAA) are celebrating the placement of 13 Indigenous workers into roles with John Holland CPB on the WestConnex Rozelle Interchange Project, thanks to the implementation of Workplace Readiness Program (WRP).


John Holland CPB Contractors engaged Goanna Services to recruit and provide mentoring to participants entering the Workplace Readiness Program (WRP), prior to securing a full-time paid traineeship on the major infrastructure project.


To deliver this, Goanna Services collaborated with AAA (Aboriginal Advancement Alliance) and leading employment services provider, Asuria, to source and filter suitable talent to participate in the customised Workplace Readiness Program.


Having been selected by Asuria, participants attended AAA’s “Revelations Program” that consisted of two days of culturally appropriate vocational pre-placement mentoring, training, and job readiness coaching, and were then interviewed and selected to attend the WRP, which included three weeks of paid construction training, where leading RTO Health & Safety Advisory Services delivered the technical skills training for civil construction accredited training units of competency.


To date, the collaboration between Goanna Services, Asuria and AAA has seen 13 Indigenous job seekers, including two Aboriginal women, placed into employment with John Holland CPB Contractors, where they’ve since commenced working on the $3.9bn project as civil and tunnel workers, plant & equipment operators, trade assistants and in carpentry roles.


Following their successful placements, participants in the Workplace Readiness Program will continue to gain access to Goanna Services’ and Asuria’s ongoing support and expertise, with the goal of achieving sustainable employment for everyone involved.


Additionally, the program will recognise and reward participants for their hard work and community contribution by offering pathways to formal qualifications, including Certificate II or III in Civil Construction.


Speaking on the benefits of the WRP, Goanna Services Director, Cory Robertson says: ”When you show people who they can be, see their eyes light up and their confidence build, they start to walk taller knowing they can have a better life and career; that’s the construction outcome you want from what we do and why we do it together. And thanks to CPB and John Holland for the opportunity to work with them. The project has some very caring and capable leaders sincerely committed to our philosophy of ‘Driving Change and Constructing Champions’, which is a breath of fresh air.”


Asuria’s Executive Director - jobactive, Alicea Shaw, who championed the program, says: “The strong, early results delivered by the Workplace Readiness Program are a true testament to what can be achieved when innovative organisations come together around the shared goal of helping people from diverse backgrounds to be successful in employment. Not only is this a great result for John Holland CPB, it’s also a shining example of the skills and staffing solutions employment service providers are capable of delivering for industries across infrastructure, transport, logistics, health care and more.”


Commenting on Indigenous workers placed in roles, Nathan Ross, Director, at the Aboriginal Advancement Alliance (AAA) says: “We are all about placing good people, into good jobs, with good companies. The collaboration on delivering our program for such a good project and with leading companies like CPB and John Holland has been successful, a pleasure and a lot of fun”.


Joshua Milson, one of the Workplace Readiness Program participants and new starters with John Holland CPB, says of his experience: “I really enjoyed the training, from setting up my personal business to the skills and training we need on the job. I feel part of a team and continue to be supported. I love the work I am doing on the project and continue to learn every day. I now have the direction and purpose I needed and have been looking for. I can see a great future ahead for me now”.


Delivering employment services for job seekers, employers and governments domestically and internationally for over 25 years, Asuria is a high performing provider of Disability Employment Services, Jobactive, Self-Employment New Business Assistance, ParentsNext, Time to Work employment services, Transition to Work, New Enterprise Incentive Scheme and more.


This Workplace Readiness Program is a collaboration between Asuria, the Aboriginal Advancement Alliance and Goanna Services.


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