Western Downs Regional Council is helping kick-start the careers of 30 of the region’s young people with the 2019 Early Career Program — nine of whom are working in Chinchilla, Miles and Tara.

Council has employed 30 Apprentices and Trainees across several industries including Business, Cinemas, Information and Digital Media Technology, Animal Management and Local Laws, Finance, Rural Services, Civil Construction, Diesel Fitting, Parks and Open Spaces and Events. Of those 30, nine young people from Chinchilla, Miles and Tara have been employed across the Chinchilla, Miles and Tara Customer Service Centres, Chinchilla Cinema, Chinchilla and Miles Parks and Open Spaces Depots, and Miles and Tara Works Depots. Each of these nine young people working in Chinchilla, Tara and Miles will finish their Traineeships and Apprenticeships with industry experience and clear career path options.

Mayor Paul McVeigh said he was proud this program would benefit young people in the Chinchilla District. “Council does have the opportunity as a large employer to be able to offer Traineeships and Apprenticeships to our young people so they’ll see the Western Downs as a great place to live, work and play,” he said. “Council received a whopping 859 applications for the Early Career Program in 2019. That’s great news for us because it shows our young people are really keen to get hands-on experience, local employment and opportunities to stay in our communities. We’re really excited to offer these Apprenticeships and Traineeships to young people right across our region.”

The first Early Career Program cohort of 19 young people from across the Western Downs were welcomed to Council with an official morning tea on Tuesday morning where they had the opportunity to chat with the Mayor, Councillors, General Managers and Coordinators. Elly Walsh, 17, started her Business Traineeship at Chinchilla this week and said she’s excited for the opportunity. “I’ll be focusing on payroll and coordinating orders from within the Chinchilla stores,” she said. “I’m excited to be actively partaking in the community and giving back to my town.”

Brenton Gulliver, 16, started his Parks and Open Spaces Apprenticeship at the Chinchilla Depot and he’s looking forward to working with the team. “I’m looking forward to helping out and I like doing different things every day,” he said. “The opportunity popped up so I took it!”

Council is currently in the process of finalising one more Business Traineeship and two Traineeships for people with disabilities across the region.

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