With NSW recording a surge in demand for counselling support services during a pandemic that has affected up to two million jobs, one Campbelltown local is committed to upskilling to help Western Sydney residents.
Jasmina Djezic recently upskilled in a Diploma of Counselling and Diploma of Community Services at TAFE NSW Campbelltown, which is an industry experiencing significant demand for services.
The Federal Government recently announced a $1.1 billion package to boost mental health services, domestic violence support and community support services.
Studying at TAFE NSW has allowed Jasmina to fast track her way to university so she can be out in the workforce sooner helping members of the community during this global pandemic.
She is now in the middle of a Bachelor of Social Work degree and regularly volunteers for Junction Works Community Centre in Campbelltown, who work closely with people suffering hardship and disadvantage as well as providing disability support services.
“I wouldn’t have this volunteer opportunity if it wasn’t for the work placement I did as part of my TAFE NSW course. It has given me the confidence to work in the industry and put my practical skills into action,” she said.
Although Jasmina’s volunteer work has temporarily paused due to COVID-19, she said she is more determined to give back to the community, after hearing the hardships members of the community are facing.
“It’s heartbreaking to see people lose their jobs or have families facing domestic violence fears during isolation, which makes essential jobs like counselling and community support services even more crucial during this time.”
Before studying at TAFE NSW as a mature age student, Jasmina worked as a Bosnian interpreter for intergovernmental military alliance NATO and was able to relaunch her career in the community services sector through TAFE NSW.
TAFE NSW Community Services Team Leader, Rebeccah Matthews said TAFE NSW is committed to preparing students to be job-ready for a career in an essential service and building a steady stream of skilled graduates for the workforce.
“TAFE NSW is determined to continue equipping students with essential community services skills so that there is a steady stream of graduates prepared for jobs in an industry that is experiencing a major demand for services,” Mrs Matthews said.
TAFE NSW counselling and community services students will continue their course this term using connected learning where students learn with a teacher and other students via web conferencing technology as part of a virtual classroom. Connected learning supports social distancing, while enabling students to progress their studies.
To find out more about the Community Services courses at TAFE NSW, visit www.tafensw.edu.au, or call 131 601.
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