Building the Early Years workforce in Greater Shepparton

Greater Shepparton City Council acknowledged the partnership and objectives of the Greater Shepparton Early Years WomenCAN pilot project at its February Council Meeting on Tuesday.

Summary

  • Greater Shepparton City Council endorses the Greater Shepparton Early Years WomenCAN pilot project at its February meeting.
  • The pilot, in partnership with WomenCAN Australia, The Bowden Marstan Foundation, and Greater Shepparton Foundation, runs from February 2024 to February 2025.
  • Aimed at 10-20 women from diverse backgrounds, the project supports them in completing Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care while working in local early years centers.
  • The initiative, originating from the Best Start Early Years Alliance, focuses on an 'earn and learn' and peer support model to enhance workforce engagement and career opportunities for women in Greater Shepparton.

Read the full media release below. 

The Greater Shepparton Early Years WomenCAN pilot project is a partnership between WomenCAN Australia, The Bowden Marstan Foundation, Greater Shepparton Foundation and Council, which will run from February 2024 to February 2025.

The project aims to support between 10 and 20 women from diverse backgrounds to complete their Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care whilst working in a local early years centre.

Through conversations that originated with the Best Start Early Years Alliance, the opportunity arose to work with WomenCAN Australia to deliver the 12 month pilot project which will see an ‘earn and learn’ and peer support model implemented in Greater Shepparton, focusing on women from diverse backgrounds.

WomenCAN Australia is a registered charity that seeks to reconnect women with the workforce through peer supported training and employment. They do this by engaging groups of women, including those from disadvantaged and diverse backgrounds, in a peer-supported, accredited vocational training model that enables them to ‘earn and learn’ on the job, whilst crafting sustainable career pathways.

Mayor, Councillor Shane Sali, said Council is extremely pleased to support this important project.

“We continue to work towards a more engaged community with better career opportunities. The implementation of this project is a step in the right direction for our diverse community,” he said.

“Council has a fair and inclusive workforce environment, which gives women the chance to thrive in their careers. By ensuring equal opportunities, we unlock the talents and skills of all women and contribute to a more diverse Early Years workforce.”

WomenCAN is already present and working in Shepparton with aged care providers to train and employ women to work in this sector. They have also successfully delivered an early years program in Bendigo.

Graduates from the program will play a part in building the early years workforce ahead of the implementation of the Best Start, Best Life reforms, which will see substantial increases in the hours of kindergarten delivered to three and four year old children in Victoria.

Once qualified at the Certificate III level, some of the women may access pathways to completing diploma or bachelor level early childhood education and care qualifications. It is anticipated the WomenCAN pilot will generate valuable insights into supporting underrepresented cohorts to consider a career in the early years.

For further information, please visit https://www.womencanaustralia.org/childcare

 

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