On December 5th last year, Maribyrnong and Moonee Valley LLENs (MMVLLEN) launched a new strategy to increase career and employment opportunities for young people across Maribyrnong and Moonee Valley.

    Introduced at their school and industry breakfast, the Pathways to Employment strategy will create new opportunities for local students to engage with industry by creating multiple partnership connections between local schools and employers.

    Eighty people attended the launch event from schools and business, which produced 90 career and employment pledges from employers and 61 expressions of interest from 13 local schools to engage with varies activities with local business.

    MMVLLEN’s purpose is to facilitate and broker these partnerships between education, training community and industry stakeholders to ensure young people are engaged in school, have a greater understanding of the world of work and the pathways to further training or employment. As a non-for-profit charity, working across the inner west over the past 18 years, they facilitate and deliver over a dozen key strategic partnership initiatives to achieve this, and pride their programs in providing practical experiences for local young people.

    Their recent achievements include being awarded the African Media Association award for an organisation supporting African-Australians for their work in delivering the Youth Internship Initiative, which provides practical industry experience, professional mentoring, skills development and ongoing support to find employment. As a result over 80% of young people undertaking the program in 2018 gained employment.

    The Westsider has been lucky enough to be involved in the program and over the last year has hosted and mentored a Structured Workplace Learning (SWL) student from Footscray City College, as well as two Youth Internship Initiative (YII) participants.

    Managing editor Derek Green said “To be in the position to be able to help a young person gain experience, network, and just get a feel for a workplace not only resonates with what the Westsider is about – inclusion – it is also a great feeling seeing the difference you can make for a young person with just a few hours of your week.”

    If you would like to find out more how your business can support local young people or you would like to become a professional mentor – contact Boyd Maplestone CEO of MMVLLEN on 93767251 or via email:

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