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Campaign Shows Jobs Change Lives

27 March 2017 at 8:47 am
Wendy Williams
The ability for jobs to change lives, particular for young people, is the ethos behind a new campaign that will see a disability employment service donate $500 for every job placement secured to fund youth outreach services.

Wendy Williams | 27 March 2017 at 8:47 am


Campaign Shows Jobs Change Lives
27 March 2017 at 8:47 am

The ability for jobs to change lives, particular for young people, is the ethos behind a new campaign that will see a disability employment service donate $500 for every job placement secured to fund youth outreach services.

CHESS Employment, which provides specialist assistance to help jobseekers with a disability or mental illness partner with local employers, has aligned with headspace Coffs Harbour to promote youth wellness in the community with a new Jobs Change Lives campaign.

The campaign aims to challenge employers in the Coffs Harbour and Clarence Regions to help strengthen their community through employment.

CHESS CEO Paul Kelly told Pro Bono News they had seen firsthand the positive benefits having a job could have on people.

“We’re passionate advocates for the mental health and prosperity of our youth,” Kelly said.

“We know that employment can provide meaningful change in a young person’s life so we are reaching out to business owners to register for our free employment services and help strengthen our local community.”

Kelly said the campaign arose out of growing concerns in the community about the wellbeing of young people in the area.

“In recent times in parts of our area there has been issues of great concern regarding the wellbeing of especially of youth in the regional area, where sometimes there aren’t as many work opportunities for them, these things can have a spiralling effect, impacting motivation and self esteem,” he said.

“So we developed this program to create the awareness but also to provide an incentive for action and put that power in the hands of businesses, small business, large businesses in the area, who are at the end of the day stakeholders in the wellbeing of the regional community, just like everyone else.”

As part of the campaign CHESS Employment will donate $500 to headspace for every job secured until the end of May.

In the Clarence Valley these funds will go towards setting up youth outreach services based in Grafton, to address the suicide crisis that community is experiencing.

For Coffs Harbour the donations will be used to support and strengthen the work headspace does within that community.

As part of its professional employment services CHESS also provides free recruitment, on-the-job support and access to wage subsidies for small business and employers in the region.

Kelly said with this campaign local business owners had a “unique opportunity” to strengthen their own organisations by nurturing a diverse and mentally healthy workplace, which in turn, supports the community as a whole.

“What we’re saying to businesses also is that whilst we see the benefits of a job for someone we also see the benefits for businesses,” he said.

“They can take advantage of this promotion, to not only support the community [but] to help the growth of your own business… on top of the $500 to headspace, there are generous wage subsidies, ideally for training that go with job placements and quite often that is an opportunity for an employer to sit back and look at the business planning processes as to how they can improve or grow the business as well.”

Kelly said the enquiry rate had already been fantastic.

“Enquiries and hits have gone through the roof, there have been over 10,000 views on Facebook and that’s in a week,” he said.

“We’re delighted with that.”

He said research had shown how important a job could be.

“Research shows for a lot of people, their self-identity comes from the type of work that they do,” he said.

“Their view of their own self-worth and esteem, comes from a job and certainly… there’s nothing like a job to have us bounce up each day and look forward to a day where we can go and meet the challenges of the job, the satisfaction of doing what that role might provide.

“The opportunity to interact with other work colleagues is very, very important to our overall wellbeing and place in society and a job whether it be full time or even a part time job is of so much benefit.

“And it is valued by people, especially anyone facing disadvantage or some form of barrier, and especially if that barrier tends to be a mental health issue. The commitment and loyalty that we’ve seen over the years and the feedback that we have from employers it is overwhelming.”

Wendy Williams  |  Editor  |  @WendyAnWilliams

Wendy Williams is a journalist specialising in the not-for-profit sector and broader social economy. She has been the editor of Pro Bono News since 2018.

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