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21 June 2001

Local projects to benefit from Work for the Dole Scheme

Karin Rule discussing a Work for the Dole project at the Lightning Ridge Central School canteen with Marianne Webb

Newtrain Community Work Co-Ordinator, Karin Rule, described the functions of the federally funded "Work for the Dole" initiative at a recent meeting of business and organisation representatives.

Aimed at encouraging long term unemployed to seek new skills Ms Rule stressed that this was not a voluntary program, with loss of benefits a likely consequence for non attendance by referees.

Eighteen to thirty-four year olds (45 in the new budget) who have been unemployed for a period of 12 months reach the assessment criteria set by Centrelink.

Work for the Dole participants will receive $20.80 per fortnight in addition to the dole and are required to work two days per week.

They will be provided with some training and clothing as required.

Applications from local bodies are being sought for suitable projects.

The proposed projects, submitted with budgets, must not take the place of paid employees.

A successful 15 place project has been operational at the Diving Tower/Heated Pool complex for some time.

Ideally the supervisors of these projects will motivate participants and instill confidence and self-esteem.

Project proposers will be required to provide raw materials.

Time is of the essence as applications are required by June 30. Successful applicants are expected to be notified mid-July.

The local State Emergency Service, Pony Club, Walgett Shire Council and Lightning Ridge Central School Canteen all expressed interest in securing placements under this scheme.

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