Gift helps to lay foundation for jobs

VTEC Employment Program managers David Hynes and Jarrad Oakley Nicholls. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au   d434043
VTEC Employment Program managers David Hynes and Jarrad Oakley Nicholls. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au d434043

The Prime Minister�s report on Closing the Gap in February revealed indigenous employment outcomes were not on track to be met by the target year of 2018.

Mr Wirrpanda, who founded the Wirrpanda Foundation, said it was disappointing to see there had been a decline in employment outcomes since 2008.

�It would definitely help if employers could commit to offer employment opportunities for Aboriginal people,� he said.

Wirrpanda Foundation VTEC manager Jarrad Oakley Nicholls said the donation of $25,000 from MAX Employment was �massive� for the Foundation.

�It�s about making sure people have meaningful employment,� he said.

�If they dream big, that�s where they can be.�

Foundation chief executive Lisa Cunningham said the donation from MAX would go a long way in helping to reduce the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous employment.

�The mentoring programs we offer to indigenous Australians aim to improve their life choices, increase school retention and improve overall health,� Ms Cunningham said.

�MAX Employment�s generous donation will aid in developing programs like this and help reduce the gap that�s still present in Australia.�

Mr Wirrpanda said it was important that all Australians worked together to improve the gap in key areas between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians.

�One of the Foundation�s major programs is our VTEC program, along with our P242 Employment program which prepares people for employment,� he said.

�We know these programs are working as we have people in jobs.

�We really need to work with employers to find opportunities for Aboriginal people within their companies.�