$1.5 Billion program that aims to provide jobs, participation and community-development service in 60 remote regions across Australia.
The Remote Jobs and Communities Program (RJCP) provides a jobs, participation and community-development service in 60 remote regions across Australia. The programme supports people to build their skills and get a job or to participate to their capacity in activities that contribute to the strength and sustainability of communities. It also helps remote-area employers to meet their workforce needs and supports communities in remote Australia to plan and build a better future.
The design of the Remote Jobs and Communities Program (RJCP) reflects the Government’s view that everyone who can work should work. Remote job seekers, including those on CDEP wages, are given the personalised support they need to take up opportunities. Those who cannot get a job participate in meaningful activities that contribute to their communities as well as making them more work ready.
Key features of the Remote Jobs and Communities Program are:
- Employment and participation activities, including personalised support for job seekers;
- The Remote Youth Leadership and Development Corps (Youth Corps) to help young people move successfully from school to work;
- Providers and communities working together through the development of Community Action Plans to identify the strategies and resources needed to overcome barriers to employment and participation; and
- The Community Development Fund to help communities build strong social and economic foundations.
Funding for the Remote Jobs and Communities Program over the next five years includes:
- $1.1 billion for Remote Employment and Participation Activities to support community development, to help people build the skills they need to take up available jobs and to fund the cost of purchasing goods and services for job seekers
- $89 million for the Remote Youth Leadership and Development Corps providing 12,000 places over five years for young people
- $237.5 million for the Community Development Fund to provide grant funding for larger community development activities to strengthen community capacity.
The Remote Jobs and Communities Program (RJCP) will provide a simpler, more integrated and flexible approach to participation and employment services for people living in remote areas of Australia. A key feature of the new Remote Jobs and Communities Program is the principle of community ownership of the services. Communities, in partnership with Remote Jobs and Communities Program providers, will determine the best mix of employment and community activities in their region.
The new Remote Jobs and Communities Program builds on the strengths of the current programs while providing a simpler, more flexible, integrated and responsive service to better meet the needs of job seekers and communities in remote Australian.
The Remote Jobs and Communities Program will have a significantly improved on-the-ground presence, with all Remote Jobs and Communities Program providers being required to have a local presence. In addition, job seekers will only have to deal with a single service provider, unlike the current arrangements where services may be delivered by two or more providers in a location.
The new service will ensure more Indigenous and other remote area job seekers participate in meaningful community activities and get the skills they need to find and keep a job.
The Remote Jobs and Communities Program is based on the principle of greater community ownership. Communities will be able to adapt employment and community development services thought Community Action Plans to put in place innovative models and to take advantage of community-specific opportunities.
A key principle underlying the new Remote Jobs and Communities Program is community ownership and engagement. The new Remote Jobs and Communities Program gives greater control to people in remote areas to drive change in their communities. Working with their local service provider, communities will have more say over the types of community activities and services in their region.
Providers will work with the community to develop a Community Action Plan, which will set out employment, economic and community development goals.
The Community Development Fund will help communities build an economic base and a more sustainable future and fund projects that are closely aligned to Community Action Plans and the needs of communities.
Community Action Plans
Community Action Plans in the new Remote Jobs and Communities Program will be community driven. Community members will decide what activities and services they need to make their communities stronger and build the skills of community members.
Giving communities a greater say in what they need, and how they wish to address local issues will lead to greater participation and ownership of the initiatives.
Where there is a current Local Implementation Plan, or other strategic plan in place, communities in partnership with their local provider will use this to develop and implement their Community Action Plan. Ensuring existing plans are used will reduce red tape and overlap of services, and meet communities’ desire for more streamlined processes.
Where there is no current community strategic plan in place, communities, in partnership with their local provider, will develop a strategic plan that will identify their needs and goals and then use this plan to develop and implement their Community Action Plan.
Community Development Fund
The Community Development Fund will provide communities with the ability to drive locally-grown ideas that are closely aligned with their Community Action Plans and the needs of the community. The Australian Government will invest $240 million through the Community Development Fund to help deliver development opportunities and community capacity building. The Fund will strengthen local communities and ensure they can deliver projects and activities that suit their needs, make them more sustainable and, create real jobs in the short and long terms.
Projects under the Community Development Fund will support larger community development projects, which lead to sustained economic growth and positive change in the community. These will be developed by the community and must provide employment and participation opportunities for local people.
The allocation of funding will be determine by the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs and the Minister for Indigenous Affairs based on the strengths and weaknesses of each proposal. This may take into account a variety of factors including:
- The community’s level of need