Food and Fibre careers program reaches over 1100 job seekers

Monday 31 October 2022

 

 

MEDIA RELEASE

 

FOOD AND FIBRE CAREERS PROGRAM REACHES OVER 1100 JOB SEEKERS

Food and Fibre Great South Coast (FFGSC) has announced that its Careers Advisory Panel (CAP) program has meaningfully engaged with over 1100 South West Victorian students and job seekers about considering a career in food and fibre.

The CAP (FFGSC’s flagship careers program) has been an outstanding success since its official launch on 1 December in Camperdown. In its first year, 15 CAP Ambassadors have reached over 1100 students and job seekers at regional careers exhibitions, in classrooms and by facilitating excursions to large employers and worksites including farms, processing facilities and sustainable timber plantations.

CAP Chair, Jonathan Jenkin, said “The CAP model has an incredibly important role to play in improving the skills crisis facing agricultural communities all over regional Australia.

“The conversations CAP participants have with students and job seekers provides firsthand stories about careers, experiences and lifestyles from locals. This is having a genuine impact by opening hearts and minds to a career in food and fibre.”

CAP Deputy Chair, Lucy Collins, said CAP Ambassadors are learning a lot from the young people they speak to.

“I’m genuinely excited by how captivated students are when they get to see the work we in agriculture.

“Because it’s industry-led, the CAP is unique in that it can match career aspirations to real employment opportunities in food and fibre. It’s also opening the industry’s eyes to the types of careers and lifestyles the next generation are looking for – happily, they can all be found in food and fibre!”

FFGSC is now fundraising for the second phase of the CAP, which involves expanding the program to include a broader network, developing innovative digital content, and improving agricultural representation at jobs fairs. Early in 2022, FFGSC and the CAP won an important in-kind role supporting the delivery of VicHealth’s ‘The Big Connect and Brotherhood of St Laurence’s ‘AgFutures initiatives, with project works and planning ongoing.

The CAP received funding in FY20-21 from an ABC Heywire/FRRR grant, Deakin University – Warrnambool Campus, the Gwen and Edna Jones Foundation and DemoDAIRY Foundation. More information about the CAP can be found here.

 

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Quotes attributable to key program partners:

 

Alistair McCosh, Director Deakin University Warrnambool Campus, fmr. Deputy Chair FFGSC, Chair NFFC Committee

“The Careers Advisory Panel’s successful reach to over 1000 students and job seekers is an example of the incredible impact that grassroots, industry-led careers programs can have in regional sectors like food and fibre. Deakin University was proud to partner with FFGSC in the delivery of the Careers Advisory Panel and looks forward to seeing its progression into the future.

Deakin University regularly engages with industry to support students and graduates to find career pathways that align with their values and aspirations. We’re excited to see the conversations sparked by the CAP which will encourage students to explore the exciting and rewarding career pathways available throughout the food and fibre supply chain.”

 

Andrea Vallance, Chair DemoDAIRY Foundation

“DemoDAIRY Foundation appreciates the work that FFGSC are putting into promoting and advancing awareness of careers in agribusinesses and the opportunities that the dairy industry provides.

DemoDAIRY Foundation was proud to sponsor the development and launch of the FFGSC Careers Advisory Panel. As a charity set up to promote dairy resources, education and innovation, aligning with organisations like FFGSC on careers issues is our core business, and we’re looking forward to continuing out partnership with FFGSC across their range of strategic priorities.”

 

Matt Porter, Director Neil Porter Legacy

The Neil Porter Legacy is an active organisation that exposes students to the vast career opportunities in our region. Food and fibre represents a major employer, providing many job options to our youth. To know the Careers Advisory Panel has had such a wide and meaningful reach across the region is both exciting and sincerely gratifying. In 2022, when we have had school groups interested in learning about agriculture, we have engaged members of the CAP to work with these classes. The CAP members were always very well prepared, knowledgeable, generous with their time and engaging speakers. I can’t recommend to schools highly enough to engage with the CAP and use the wonderful resource they provide.

 

Media contact:

Walter Batt

Policy & Advocacy Officer

Ph: 0478 007 636

E: walter@southcoastfoodfibre.com.au