Konstantina migrated to Australia from Greece in 2018 with her four children and was struggling to find employment as a teacher. Even though she had teaching experience, she was unable to find work without updating her skills.
With the help of her ParentsNext consultant, Susan from Wesley Mission, Konstantina enrolled in TAFE to undertake a Certificate IV in Education Support in the hope of becoming a Teaching Assistant.
Wesley Mission provided financial assistance through the ParentsNext Participation Fund to help pay for Konstantina’s course fees and textbooks.
With the support of ParentsNext, Konstantina continued her studies and found a work placement at a local school. Her commitment and great attitude paid off and Konstantina was offered casual paid work at the school. She has been offered a position as a permanent Teacher’s Assistant upon completion of her course.
Susan’s support and guidance has brought Konstantina closer to her goal of stable employment in a field she loves.
Speaking about the support she received, Konstantina said: “After this program I feel more confident and that I am not alone on this journey. They (the provider) made me believe again in myself...and I felt their support all the way.”
On 1 July 2021, a number of enhancements were made to the ParentsNext program. Changes include:
- Any Parenting Payment recipient with a child under six years of age can volunteer to participate in the program. Volunteers receive the same high-quality assistance as all participants.
- All providers will have access to the Participation Fund to help all participants (including volunteers) achieve their education and employment goals.
- The Participation Fund is a flexible pool of funds providers can use to help participants prepare for education and employment. For example, a provider may access the Participation Fund to contribute to the cost of: a training course; attaining a drivers’ license; or equipment and clothing items to help a participant into employment.
- Education and employment outcome payments have been made available to be all providers to further encourage program outcomes.
- All participants are eligible to apply for relocation assistance and employer wage subsidies.