Work for the Dole information for job seekers

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Work for the Dole helps you gain skills and experience that give back to the community and help you find a job.

If you are with a jobactive provider you will need to take part in an approved activity, which could be Work for the Dole, in order to meet your Six Month Activity Requirement or Annual Activity Requirement. If you are in jobactive and have mutual obligation requirements, you must meet these requirements to keep receiving your income support.

Job seekers in the New Employment Services Trial may also participate in Work for the Dole activities.

While you participate in Work for the Dole, you will receive an extra $20.80 a fortnight to assist with expenses such as transport.

What do you get out of Work for the Dole?

Work for the Dole is a work-like activity to help you get work experience, help you find a job. It gives you the chance to:

  • develop the skills that employers want—like team-work, communication and showing you are reliable
  • increase your confidence and show that you are ready to start working
  • meet new people and make contacts who can be a referee for you when you apply for a job
  • get involved in your local community.

What will you be doing?

There are many activities you can do in Work for the Dole including:

  • Gardening and maintenance works
  • Conservation or environmental activities including rehabilitation of public parks
  • Retail work
  • Hospitality services
  • Office administration
  • Warehouse duties
  • Electronic archiving of hard copy documents
  • Animal or wildlife shelters
  • Helping establish a social enterprise.

How long do you need to do Work for the Dole?

Six Month Activity Requirement

If you do Work for the Dole to meet your Six Month Activity Requirement, you must participate for at least 8 weeks. The number of hours you do each week will depend on your individual requirements. Your Provider will advise you the hours you need to do each week.

Annual Activity Requirement

If you are in jobactive and have an Annual Activity Requirement, you will need to participate in an approved activity or a combination of activities for six months. One of the approved activities you can do to meet this requirement is Work for the Dole. There are different hourly requirements for participation in approved activities based on your age.

If you are aged:

  • 18–49 years, you are required to do 50 hours per fortnight in an approved activity, such as Work for the Dole
  • 50-59 years, you are required to complete 30 hours per fortnight of an approved activity, which can include volunteering for Work for the Dole
  • 60 years to Age Pension, you are required to complete 10 hours per fortnight of an approved activity, which can include volunteering for Work for the Dole.

If you have a partial capacity to work (15-29 hours) or are principal carer parents, there are different requirements:

  • aged under 30 - 30 hours per fortnight of Work for the Dole and/or another approved activity
  • aged 30 to 59 - 15-16 hours per fortnight of Work for the Dole and/or another approved activity
  • aged 60 and over - no requirement.

What support is available?

Your provider will help you get ready for Work for the Dole. This includes making sure you have completed any workplace inductions or training and providing you with specific items for your activity.

Want to know more?