The Western Force came to play at the Neerigen Brook Primary School athletic carnival, assisting teachers, lifting student morale and even competing in a race or two. The players also took the opportunity to speak with parents about the Minderoo Foundation’s new In-School Parent Employment Service (IPES). Their aim was to start a conversation about the benefits of the program which endeavours to link young parents to employment.
IPES was recently introduced in Armadale WA as part of a new Federal Government pilot assisting young parents to develop long-term employment strategies. Evaluated by the Telethon Kids Institute, the pilot tests whether co-locating employment services within a school environment promotes effective participation through a ‘one-stop-shop’ model approach, engaging with parents while children are at school.
Western Force player Clay Uyen said the program was a great opportunity for local families.
“We’re here to promote the in-school employment service that Minderoo runs, which is a wicked program for young parents and kids. The more we can mingle and promote that [program], and let the word be heard then the better” Uyen said.
IPES launched with significant interest at Challis Community Primary and Willandra Primary in mid-2018. The program quickly expanded to Neerigen Brook Primary and other local schools in Armadale. This year further services will roll-out to additional primary and secondary schools including Bedfordale, Harrisdale, Piara Waters, Forrestdale, Champion Lakes, Wungong, Hilbert, Roleystone and Kelmscott.
Providing a hands-on approach and building a solid foundation with parents across a range of local events gives young people a greater sense of investment within their community and reengages them with the job-seeking process. IPES works with local support services to encourage eligible young parents to sign up and co-design a personal employment plan. Minderoo also target local businesses to source jobs for participants, securing jobs from local employers for participating young parents encourages them to complete work-ready and job-specific training.
Minderoo Foundation’s In-school Parent Employment Service (IPES) is funded by the Australian Government, Department of Social Services.