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FRESH START: Belle-Angele Ciza and her husband Joseph Minani are both employed at Finley Regional Care after studying at TAFE NSW Finley.
A family that fled war-ravaged East Africa for the relative serenity of a small town in the Riverina has credited TAFE NSW with giving them the skills to integrate more seamlessly into the Finley community.
Born and raised in Burundi, one of the most impoverished countries in the world, Belle-Angele Ciza arrived in Australia for a better life eight years ago and, despite speaking little English, enrolled in a Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) at TAFE NSW.
Armed with her qualifications, she and her family moved to Finley in 2016 and within weeks Ms Ciza had secured a job with Finley Regional Care.
It comes at a time of an intense skills shortage in the aged care industry, with a submission to last year’s Federal Senate inquiry into the future of Australia’s aged care industry by Leading Aged Services Australia finding the workforce would have to increase from 350,000 workers to 1.3 million by 2050 to meet surging demand.
Meanwhile, data from the TAFE NSW Jobs of the Future report predicted “aged carer” would enjoy the largest jobs growth of any profession in the Murray region between 2018 and 2021.
Ms Ciza is currently completing a Certificate IV in Ageing Support at TAFE NSW Finley to increase her skills and has been joined in the class by her husband, Joseph Minani who is also an aged carer at Finley Regional Care.
“I do night shift and he does morning shift, so we handover to each other at the end of each shift,” Ms Ciza said.
“I love my job and I love that TAFE NSW has helped keep me up to date and learning more. The teachers are great and have so much experience in the industry.”
Ms Ciza, 32, next plans to complete a Diploma of Nursing with TAFE NSW to help her become an enrolled nurse and progress her career further.
TAFE NSW Finley aged care teacher Alison Luelf said the aged care sector was “crying out” for skilled workers.
“There are just so many jobs out there and it’s a career that really suits people who are caring by nature and willing to spend time to talk to older people,” she said.
Ms Luelf said the Certificate III Individual Support (Ageing) was a 12-month course that offered a blend of face-to-face and online learning, with students attending classes in person one or two days a week.
To find out more about studying aged care at TAFE NSW, phone 13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au.
Media contact: Daniel Johns, TAFE NSW Media and Communications – Business Partner, 6938 1441, mobile 0477 722 428.