FNQ Explores NDIS Training & Skills Potential for the Region
Training and skills development, in preparation for the rollout of the NDIS in the Far North Queensland region on 1 July 2018, was the hot topic at the WorkAbility Qld inaugural FNQ NDIS Training and Skills Focus Group meeting in Cairns on 19 January 2018.
Representatives from a wide range of the ‘skills ecosystem’ including disability service providers, government agencies, employment service providers, private consultants and registered training organisations came together to tackle the challenge of preparing a skilled workforce for the arrival of the NDIS in FNQ.
Key speakers at the gathering were Matthew Gillett, Industry Development Manager at Community Services Industry Alliance and Kylie Hogan, Senior Sector Development Officer from National Disability Services.
Mr Gillett outlined the main features of the staged three-year WorkAbility NDIS Training & Skills Support Strategy (NTSSS) to be implemented to support the design of the NDIS workforce through training and related supports.
In his presentation, Mr Gillett discussed the priority areas of the Queensland NTSSS initiative being: Upskilling the Workforce; Growing the NDIS Workforce and; Improving VET Quality.
Mr Gillett said, “We have strong support from the Queensland Government through the VET Investment Plan, so this is a fantastic opportunity to shape the skills development of the NDIS workforce.”
Ms Hogan also presented information on the initiatives the WorkAbility Qld co-ordinators across the state were implementing to help in the recruitment and development of local people in preparation for NDIS workforce demand.
Some of the strategies Ms Hogan outlined included disability jobs roadshows, the exploration of shared induction programs, a focus on values based recruitment processes, and pop-up jobs shops and disability careers expos.
“WorkAbility Qld local working groups across the state have been developing and trialling a range of new ideas in the areas of attraction, recruitment and skilling of the NDIS workforce, which can be adopted and adapted as needed to support the needs of the FNQ region,” said Ms Hogan.
Participants in the meeting also had the opportunity to engage in a World Café style brainstorming process where topics such as pre-employment training and recruitment, delivery of induction to disability units, implementing targeted recruitment strategies, exploring funding options, and rural and remote delivery solutions were explored.
Ms Deb Selway, FNQ Local WorkAbility Co-ordinator, said the meeting resulted in a number of positive outcomes including the development of strong partnerships between key stakeholders to help maintain and develop a strong and vital NDIS workforce for the Far North Queensland region.
The FNQ NDIS Training and Skills Focus Group continues to meet regularly in Cairns. Enquiries regarding the meeting can be directed to Deb Selway, FNQ Local WorkAbility Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org