WITH a column called Aspire CQ I get asked why do I write so much about youth unemployment. Aspirations, I'm told, shouldn't dwell on negatives, they need to be positive.
Ignoring the negatives doesn't make them go away and can be counterproductive in trying to achieve the aspirations (and we are talking about local 15 to 24-year-olds, who could be living at home with us or across the road, and should never be considered as negatives).
However. while highlighting the region's high youth unemployment rate. I do try to address ways to decrease it.
As Bob Burg would say, "acknowledge the problem but live in the solution".
In other words, by focusing on finding the solution rather than just the problem we have a better chance of solving it, even with an issue as big and complex as youth unemployment. It's an issue we should all live in the solution, as it is arguably not only our region's but the nation's biggest issue.
One live in the solution strategy I understand the State Government is considering is giving money to the schools for them to utilise towards programs they believe would have more success in students gaining employment on leaving school.
Nothing ventured, nothing gained, however it did make me wonder how do the schools pinpoint the most suitable programs and won't they need to establish effective relationships with local businesses to identify their current and projected workforce needs.
Schools and business are often identified (and operate) as silos, each focused on their different primary objectives.
To establish an effective relationship between both to really tackle youth unemployment, a partnership broker will arguably be required.
A broker that connects schools, business and community organisations on an issue outside their primary focus (objectives); getting youth job opportunities and ready for them.
A broker like the recently disbanded Youth Invest. Disbanded on December 31, 2014, due to the withdrawal of Federal Government support. Will we see the wheel reinvented?
In the meantime we can live the solution by attending the upcoming Communication to Careers sessions where business and students do connect.
More business representatives are needed. The next one is on tomorrow at St Ursula's, Yeppoon. Details on http://www.ring.org.au/c2c.
Will you live in the solution?