22 Jun
Seeds grow for future environmental rehabilitation experts

Seeds grow for future environmental rehabilitation experts

A group of 18 trainees has graduated from a unique environmental training and employment program, run for the first time as a collaboration between Workpower, Perth NRM and Training Alliance Group.

The 12-week program provided the opportunity to teach trainees, aged between 17 and 25, a range of industry skills. This includes native plant identification, understanding conservation processes, sustainable collection and storage methods, and how to use seed processing equipment.

Throughout the program native seeds, including Banksia, Eucalyptus, Acacia and Melaleuca species were collected from approved native reserves in Armadale, Joondalup and Mundaring areas. The majority will be used in future environmental rehabilitation projects to assist the breeding of the Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo. 

The project was made possible by the State Government’s Green Jobs Plan, part of the WA Recovery Plan. 

Job opportunities in the environmental industry

Workpower CEO, Lee Broomhall said that after COVID-19 hit, there was an opportunity to combat the increased rates of unemployment within the community, whilst also developing skilled team members across Workpower’s 11 business areas, especially in the environmental services area. 

“Through partnership with Perth NRM and Training Alliance Group, we were able to find a group of young people who were keen to be trained in environmental rehabilitation and provide them with new skills and employment opportunities,” Ms Broomhall said. 

“For some, they were out of a job after the pandemic hit, and others were looking to retrain and explore a different career path. 

“After completing the 12-week program, the trainees were all offered employment opportunities across Workpower’s various businesses.”

Jenna Sanders (left) stands with program supervisor, Kelly Berwick (right).

20-year-old Jenna Sanders signed up to the program, eager for a career change after working in hospitality. 

“I enjoy the outdoors and camping, so thought it would be great to have the opportunity to learn more about environmental rehabilitation through Workpower’s new training program,” said Jenna. 

“I’ve learnt a lot over the past three months. Like how to collect seeds, respect the environment we take them from, use machinery to sort them and how to care for them. There’s quite a bit involved that you don’t realise when you go to buy seeds.”

“Workpower offered me the opportunity to continue on with the Environmental team long-term to keep learning and extend my career. Everyone has been so welcoming and it’s been a lot of fun.” 

Following this success, Workpower will explore options to continue providing employment and training opportunities and build its workforce for the future.

To find out more about Workpower’s environmental services visit workpower.com.au.