EMPLOYMENT and training opportunities were showcased at the inaugural Scenic Rim Jobs and Skills Fest at The Centre Beaudesert this week.
Scenic Rim Regional Council invited some 34 local employers and training providers, ranging from Aldi Supermarkets to Yourtown, to set up stalls to market their employment and training opportunities to secondary students, job seekers and workers considering a career change or simply upskilling.
Scenic Rim Mayor Greg Christensen welcomed the crowd of almost 200 to the event, part of council's wider Regional Skills Investment Strategy, which is supported and funded by the Queensland government.
"It's great to see the tremendous enthusiasm with which so many local employers have embraced this event," he said.
"It's often said that a company is only as good as its people and the Scenic Rim community has a wealth of hard-working, high-calibre people - whether prospective employers or employees - who simply need to connect with one another.
"This is why we have taken the initiative to help facilitate those connections, to support growth and relationships between all levels of government, business and the local community."
The Jobs and Skills Fest identified 179 job opportunities and generated more than 315 expressions of interest for these positions.
Cr Christensens said while the Scenic Rim's regional economy was diverse, it still relied on its key industries of agri-business, tourism, health and wellbeing, along with key service sectors and construction.
He said over the next two decades, creating valuable jobs for locals would remain a key feature of council's economic development activities as it sought to continually build a more diverse, sustainable and vibrant economy.
"In the development of our Regional Prosperity Strategy, it was identified that currently 40 per cent of local resident workers leave the region every day to access employment and that most are travelling to the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Ipswich and Logan," Cr Christensen said.
"Anecdotally, we know that limited local job opportunities has resulted in many young families, who moved to the region to access its lifestyle and affordability, being unable to sustain living in their region of choice."
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Cr Christensen said in the year, 2017-2018 compared with 2016 -2017, the number of jobs in the region grew by more than 900, from 14,351 to 15,253.
"This is a great outcome for the Scenic Rim and a reflection of the strength of economic opportunities and the confidence of our business community across our region," he said.
"Now is the time for our region to take charge of its future and make things happen, rather than waiting for things to happen."