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Work for the Dole: real work experience for unemployed people.

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Media Release


Work for the Dole - real work experience for unemployed people Many unemployed people are finding out that the best training for work is work itself. Work for the Dole provides valuable work experience and three months after participation, 34 per cent of former Work for the Dole participants are either working or engaged in an activity that would increase and enhance their competitiveness in the labour market, the Employment Services Minister Mal Brough said today.

Mr Brough was announcing the September 2001 Work for the Dole project round. The 295 new projects across Australia will provide 4,226 job seekers with worthwhile work experience places in a range of activities and occupations.

Among the new projects are:

building a boat in Beenleigh, Queensland, based on traditional Timorese design, using modern materials and able to carry heavy loads for inshore fishing by East Timorese villagers; ●

designing and sewing garments, silk screen printing and promoting the merchandise in the West Kimberleys; and ●

helping to develop programme content at community broadcaster WOW FM at St Clair in Sydney’s outer west. ●

Participants will have the opportunity to learn a wide range of skills including as teacher and child care aides, customer service and marketing, heritage and conservation activities, building and carpentry, and landscaping and general maintenance work.

"While Work for the Dole is a work experience program, not an employment programme, it helps to create a culture of employment and a work ethic," Mr Brough said.

"Work for the Dole provides opportunities for people, particularly young people, to develop their work ethic while putting something worthwhile back into their community. It’s a chance for them to take on new challenges and responsibilities, to involve themselves in interesting community projects and produce results they can be proud of.

"All the indications are that the overwhelming majority of the key players in Work for the Dole - job seekers, community and charitable groups and workplace supervisors - and the general public are

enthusiastic about Work for the Dole. They see it as a positive activity that is fair and beneficial to both the unemployed and their local communities."

Mr Brough said the Government strongly believed in the principle of mutual obligation, coupled with mutual benefit.

"Implicit in the mutual obligation principle, which underpins Work for the Dole, is our belief that everyone benefits when unemployed people on welfare are engaged in work experience, volunteer work, or further education and training," he said.

"By participating in Work for the Dole, tens of thousands of young Australians are showing that they are serious about contributing to their community something in return for welfare payments."

Since late 1997, 6,770 projects have been approved, providing places for over 146,000 young Australians.


For further information contact:

Greg Jackson  0419 713 246