Local National Career Development Launch

Mar 29, 2010    

Launch of National Career Development Week 2010 Recognises Impact of Community Support for Career Development of Residents

Hosted by ambassador Steve Liebmann (journalist and broadcaster) and featuring special guest speakers and inspiring career stories from extra-ordinary local people, National Career Development Week yesterday launched its 2010 campaign.

As widely respected journalist and broadcaster of more than four decades, NCDW ambassador Steve Liebmann, said on his 2UE radio show this morning, “During the course of the launch [of National Career Development Week 2010], I met students and adults – adults who in spite of extraordinary hardship and adversity had carved out a career for themselves and now wanted to help our young people do the same thing. I felt really inspired and proud to be an Australian yesterday. In spite of all the bad news about delinquent kids and bludging adults, this country’s in pretty good shape – and the people I met yesterday are proof of that!”

The special local forum held at the Glenquarie Community Centre at James Meehan High School in Macquarie Fields was an initiative of National Career Development Week (NCDW), to launch its 2010 campaign. It was held in conjunction with the Macquarie Fields community organisations who form the Learning, Employment and Economic Development Group (LEED). LEED is a working group of the Macquarie Fields Regeneration Implementation Group, delivering the Macquarie Fields Regeneration Partnership Plan (RPP) 2007-2010. Housing NSW is the overarching lead agency facilitating and driving the delivery of the RPP.

Career development has benefits to both the individual and the community at large, including enhancing stronger economic growth and a more resilient workforce. This community activity is designed to encourage engagement in career development across the community and to promote awareness of the range of services that meet the career development needs and preferences of the community. The audience yesterday included key stakeholders across the Campbelltown area and wider Macarthur region, including schools, TAFE, educational facilities, and a wide range of community and business organisations.

Career Industry Council of Australia Spokesperson Bernadette Gigliotti, says, “Career development is about assisting all Australians to take responsibility for their life, learning and work. At the 2010 National Career Development Week launch, I was impressed by the enthusiasm for and commitment to career development across a range of organisations in Macquarie Fields. It was inspiring and motivating for the young people attending to listen to the adults’ career stories and hear about the community programs that demonstrate an interest in their development and future. Great stories well delivered, with advice to all ages and career stages.”

Julian Neylan, Acting General Manager, Housing NSW, Greater Western Sydney Housing Services Division, one of the major partners of the forum and in National Career Development activities in 2008 and 2009, says,“Macquarie Fields was a fitting location to stage the launch and builds on Housing NSW’s programs there to link residents to training and work opportunities.”

Steve Montgomery, CEO of the Macarthur Workplace Learning Program (MWLP), another of the major partners of the forum and who spoke about National Career Development Week activities in 2008 and 2009, says, “MWLP is proud to be associated with the Launch Your Future – Get the Life You Love Forum alongside a wide range of inspirational people and organisations from a diverse cross-section of the Campbelltown Local Government Area community. MWLP passionately believes in the capability, potential and capacity of people who live and work within this community, and is thrilled that this community has been chosen to launch National Career Development Week. MWLP acknowledges the importance of career development for individuals and communities, and supports National Career Development Week as a positive event that encourages people to explore life, learning and work across all ages and walks of life. Go to www.ncdw.com.au – and get involved!!”

The Forum’s guest speakers included Kate Southam (journalist/CareerOne), Troy Baverstock (NSW Institute of Sport) and Captain Ben Gallacher (Defence Force Recruiting). Ten local career stories showcased a wide range of programs, community initiatives and community partnerships – and demonstrated to young people that there are a range of opportunities and support available to help them reach their potential and take control of their future.

Kate Southam, journalist and commentator specialising in all matters related to work, who shared her practical insights with the community as a guest speaker at the forum, says, “The event included a number of speakers and I heard many positive stories about what is going on in the area to promote employment opportunities for people of all ages and career choices. Highlights [for me] included hearing three women speak about overcoming long term unemployment to start jobs they love while also raising children and giving back to the community. I also heard about a mentoring program run by Minter Ellison that provides students with valuable skills and a career orientation program run by NSW Police that was started after so many young people in the area made inquiries about becoming police officers.”

Captain Ben Gallacher, Careers Promotion Team Leader at Defence Force Recruiting, inspired the community with his own career story and the insights his remarkable life experience has brought him. Says Gallagher, “Destiny is in the palms of your own hands. The courage to try and determination to succeed is up to you. Reach out with both hands and grab opportunities willingly”.

There was overwhelming evidence at the forum of the local residents’ commitment to building a better future for young people and the impact of career development as an important building block for communities.

While describing how deciding to train to become a youth mentor after seeing a flyer in a shopping centre had transformed her own life, local resident Julie Hemmet summed up one of the key messages of the event by saying “kids do matter”. Hemmett has also since trained to assist the community’s migrant population.

Another local resident with an inspiring career story, Rosalinda Perido-Roberts, is a graduate of the social entrepreneur program who is using her skills from a Masters Degree in Agriculture overseas in a special community garden to demonstrate permaculture to the residents. For Perido-Roberts, who says “volunteering is a lifestyle”, giving back to the community is a rewarding career choice.

National Career Development Week (NCDW), now in its fourth year, encourages all Australians to develop the skills to manage their careers, learning, work and lives in order to take control of their future. NCDW activities and the NCDW website provide details of careers events and helpful advice, inspiration and links to education, training and careers resources. The NCDW website is the largest careers events database in Australia.

In 2009 over 500,000 Australians attended over 780 registered NCDW events. In 2010 the week in which we celebrate all of the careers activities held throughout the year, will be from 17 to 23 May. NCDW is an initiative of the Career Industry Council of Australia (CICA) and supported by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR).

More info: Caroline Jones, Campaign Manager, National Career Development Week (NCDW), 0418 553 222. Photographs are available on request.