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Dec 08

Service of the Month - December 2008

We are pleased to announce the winner of the "Service of the Month" is NPA Women's Shelter in Bamaga

Read the Media Release...

Bamaga is more than a tourist town it a learning hub. On the 26th 0f November 36 community members who have studied and completed the Certificate III in Community Services- Child Care will attend their graduation. This remote community can now lay claim to one of the highest completion ratios of vocational training in a remote area.

36 childcare employees from four (4) community childcare services have embraced the opportunity to gain formal recognition of their skills through Commonwealth sponsored Traineeships. Despite the obvious difficulties of distance and transport restrictions, Australian Child Care Career Options (ACCCO) has been able to successfully deliver training into an area that has been largely neglected to date. The Brisbane based training organisation has taken a proactive step in providing training and human resources to support learners that do not benefit from the conveniences enjoyed by metropolitan based students.

ACCCO principal, Narelle Cossettini, is firm in her belief that “What you put in is returned many times over and the Community deserves accolades for their dedication and commitment with an 80% completion rate.

Historically, the Cape and other regional, remote areas have missed out on mainstream vocational training opportunities. The Northern Peninsula Areas Women’s Shelter (NPAWS), the sponsored employer body, has worked in partnership with ACCCO to facilitate in-house training opportunities and hosting Brisbane based personnel for up to 10 days at a time every month

While Commonwealth Incentive payments are available to eligible employers to encourage the up-skilling of their workforce, many employers use this money as an additional income stream. NPAWS has recognised the value of investing in human capital and used this money to support local learning in a manner that best represents cultural beliefs and values. NPAWS used their employer incentive to pay for the training the be delivered in a manner that they knew would “make a difference”

According to the trainer, Sonya Rice, “It has been a reciprocal process. I have been able to share my city based experiences with a community that has vastly different influences and at the same time one that has embraced an opportunity to take on the new knowledge and apply it to their cultural environment. Initially Sonya states that “this was faced with typical challenges of working with people who have English as a second language”.  Amanda Ewart the CEO new that in order to make the training meaningful local community input and translators would need to work extensively with the trainer to achieve that outcomes that we see today. Sonya Rice A dedicated trainer with in excess of twenty four years industry experience, eight years working closely with Indigenousness and islander communities- understood that the only way one could reach the outcomes achieved today, would only be achieved with the full commitment of the community and the skills of a trainer to modify delivery and assessment to reflect the diverse needs of the learner.

The Bamaga community is able to celebrate the success knowing that this could have only been achieved when the community work closely with the training organisation. Against all odds, without state funding we now have 36 trained child care workers who “will make a difference” well done Bamaga!

Nominations are now open for Februrary 2009. If you would like to nominate a service, please fill in the following form and return it to

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