Workforce Development Project
In 2013 NHT secured funding from Skills Tasmania to conduct a 12 month workforce development project, which allowed us to do a survey of the Neighbourhood House network regarding training needs, issues and experiences, and present evidence of what works/doesn’t work for Houses in terms of training delivery. The key findings of this Project are included in the Snapshot for Houses document (see link below).
Workforce Development Project #2
With further funding secured from Skills Tasmania in late 2014, NHT developed a 2 year project that was able to build on the findings of WD Project #1. This project concluded in March 2017. A copy of the Final Project Report submitted to Skills Tasmania can be seen at the link below.
What we learnt through these two Projects.
For many people in House communities formal education was a bad experience, and Houses play a vital role in bridging the gap back to formal education and learning environments. Houses have been the starting point for many Tasmanians in progressing out of poverty and into self-reliance through the volunteering, and other engagement strategies that Houses provide in communities across Tasmania.
Houses are spread across the whole state, with a regionally diverse footprint, which allows workforce development activities to occur in often hard to reach regional areas.
Houses are not just a venue. Nowhere else provides the relationships focus in the ways that Houses can and do – providing support to people in fundamental ways, providing the building blocks of confidence, motivation, trust, and giving purpose in a real way to get engaged. Non-threatening approaches to training, adapted for, and delivered in Houses have proven to be an effective response to existing barriers to formal education.
Through working with the RTO, Avidity Training and Development, Houses and their communities have been able to pilot a new way of working to deliver accredited training. This has demonstrated the effectiveness and validity of our community development approach that is inclusive and supportive of vulnerable groups, and that this approach, when coupled with properly adapted training by a responsive RTO, leads to employment outcomes or successful transition into further advanced training, particularly in disenfranchised communities.
Community Services qualifications have proven popular and successful within the network as the course content provides good general skills to enhance employability and gives a taster for potential career pathways, rather than locking someone in to the choice they make when they first take up training. It gives them scope to explore potential options and broaden their employment possibilities.
A big win during the course of the Project was that NHT was invited to become a ‘strategic industry partner’ with Skills Tasmania. An MOU was signed between NHT and Department of State Growth. 2016 was the first year that community organisations were invited to be industry partners, and it meant a seat at the table to discuss training issues and consultation on matters that affect the network. NHT has been granted equivalent status to the Tasmanian Hospitality Assoc, Seafood Industry Council, Tas Farmers & Graziers Assoc. NHT was invited to the Ministerial Forum held in August 2016 and had the chance to present to the Minister of State Growth and key industry leaders about issues of concern to Houses. Information sharing at a strategic level enables a shared understanding of key issues, both long-standing and emerging concerns.
Previous Project updates
The following documents were generated by the 12 month Project and are available for Houses to use: