A GROUP of 20 Jimboomba and Scenic Rim youth boosted their employment prospects after completing an 18 week Skilling Queenslanders for Work program.
The nine Scenic Rim team members and 11 Jimboomba members received their Certificate I in Conservation and Land Management, First Aid Certificate, Fire Ant Training and Construction White Card.
A majority of participants also achieved their Agricultural Chemicals Distribution Control certificate.
Their achievements were celebrated during a graduation ceremony at Jimboomba Community Gardens on Friday, January 18.
Jimboomba team supervisor and member of Jimboomba Community Gardens Georgie Francis said several graduates were either on their way toward getting a job or had already found employment.
“They learned the difference between maintaining a home garden and doing big work on a council level,” she said.
“They have had a lot of experience on different levels and I hope they can take that away with them.”
Scenic Rim team leader Belinda Fairhurst said her team completed over 25 acres of weed control, planted 200,000 plants and moved over 100 cubic metres of mulch over the past 18 weeks.
“You have left a legacy,” she told the graduates.
“Looking after the environment is not an easy job. You do it because you love it not because you get paid money to do it.”
The Scenic Rim team did field work in various parts of the Scenic Rim including Tamborine Mountain, Beaudesert, Beachmont, Canungra, Fassifern, Mount Barney and more.
Jordan MP Charis Mullen said the Skilling Queenslanders for Work program achieved significant outcomes.
“We found 73 per cent of all people who participate in the program are working, training or doing a combination of both 12 months after finishing the program,” she said.
Belong project coordinator Raelee Vearing said the latest group were the fourth intake to complete the course.
“These programs achieve more than improving employment outcomes. They are changing lives,” she said.
Belong has secured funding for two more rounds of the project for Jimboomba and the Scenic Rim.
There will be an information session for the next Scenic Rim team at Beaudesert Library on January 25 from 10am.
Expressions of interest for the next Jimboomba intake are expected to open between April and May.