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In the ever-evolving disability services sector, training, retraining and upskilling staff is an important exercise in remaining relevant.
Combatting competition for well-qualified staff is also increasingly vital, with the Department of Jobs and Small Business predicting the sector will have ‘very strong growth’ in employment over the next five years*.
What is most crucial however, is embarking on training efforts to ensure you provide the best possible service to the local community. And that is why Hunter Valley disability services provider The Mai-Wel Group has partnered with TAFE NSW Glendale to carry out an upskilling project.
The Mai-Wel Group provides services and initiatives to more than 1,900 people across seven Local Government Areas. It employs 470 staff and, through TAFE NSW, 29 of these are now furthering their skills and knowledge in disability services, and 14 in youth work.
Mai-Wel People and Performance Facilitator, Cathy O’Brien, said it is important for Mai-Wel staff to have access to professional development opportunities.
“We are happy to work with TAFE NSW to provide our staff with training, to ensure our staff have the best knowledge possible to provide the highest quality of service to our participants,” Ms O’Brien said.
“Training opportunities like this ensure that Mai-Wel continues to be a provider of choice across our many and varied services Hunter-wide.”
TAFE NSW Acting Head of SkillsPoint, Health, Wellbeing & Community Services, Carina Robinson says the organisation is pleased to deliver training tailored to a business that plays an essential support role in the community.
“TAFE NSW is proud to deliver training to an industry that empowers people with a disability and their carers. With the National Disability Insurance Scheme expected to provide services to an estimated 460,000 Australians by 2020 through improved access to disability services, the sector is in a substantial growth phase,” said Ms Robinson.
“The disability and aged services sector now numbers more than 175,000 employees and our research forecasts that to increase by over 10% in the three years to 2021. The significance of training is clear. And with the sector continuing to evolve and improve its practices, skills and knowledge requirements continue to advance.
“TAFE NSW provides innovative business-to-business training to an increasing number of small to large businesses via TAFE Enterprise. We know that ongoing training and professional development is not only critical to operating an efficient, best-practice business, it is vital in keeping staff engaged.
“We are happy that our training partnership with Mai-Wel is equipping many key community workers to be skilled workers of the future within the disability services sector.”
TAFE NSW is Australia’s largest training provider, offering over 1,200 courses, from certificates to degrees. Many can be studied online via TAFE Digital, when and where it suits. Visit www.tafensw.com.au or call 131 601.