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Issue 4


BTG Bulletin May 2013


Anyone fancy a cuppa? Bridging the Gap’s ASPIRE initiative hosted a celebratory lunch in March for a group of local parents after they completed recognised barista training funded by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Bridging the Gap Chief Executive Colin Kerr said the ASPIRE initiative provided participants with mentoring and pastoral care as well as continued ongoing job search assistance. “Many of the women engaged in this course as a reintroduction to training and the workforce after having children,” he said. “We’re very pleased to announce that all participants passed the course and Nick and the team at ASPIRE will continue to support them through the job search process.”

“I have two young children and I would never have been able to afford the cost of the barista training by myself,” she said. “Successfully completing it has really given me the confidence to continue studies in the hospitality field and work toward obtaining employment.” Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations representative Margaret Banks congratulated all the participants and said the benchmark has now been set for future partakers. “We’re extremely proud that all involved completed the course to such a high standard,” she said. “We hope to see them at the Rockingham Jobs and Skills Expo networking with potential employers.”


David Rendall in Oz Together with various partners, Bridging the Gap welcomed world renowned public speaker David Rendall to Perth for just two days in April. Want to know how to achieve greatness by flaunting your failings? Read ahead for the full story. More on Page 2

Wildcat onboard team BTG Patrons at Bridging the Gap’s family fundraising screening of The Croods in 3D were delighted after ex Wildcat co-captain and sporting legend Brad Robbins stopped by and presented some awesome prizes. More on Page 3

BTG Awards 2012

Bulletin Amy Hutchison (24) said the program provided her with a chance to advance her career and hopefully secure work.

This project is funded by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations through the Local Employment Coordinator Flexible Funding Pool Initiative. 

Bridging the Gap hosted its annual Awards Night in April, honouring the hard work of clients, young people and volunteers. Check out page five for full details. More on Page 5

BTG BULLETIN | Issue 4 |May 2013


Factoring in the FREAK World renowned motivational speaker David Rendall describes himself as hyperactive, loud and rebellious. He’s too idealistic and bad at managing the finer details. He was always in trouble for being obnoxious and disruptive at school (and sometimes at work too). According to Rendall flaunting these so-called weaknesses has helped him succeed as a university professor and stand-up comedian who holds a doctorate in organisational leadership as well as a masters degree in psychology.

Bridging the Gap together with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (WA), the Education Department, the Department for Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, the Youth Action Team Network and Koorliny Arts Centre brought David out to Australia for just two days in April where he helped students and paid patrons understand how to find success in highlighting your positive qualities and flaunting your failings.

Linda Colley, Bridging the Gap’s Head of Youth and Community, said it is important that young people understand that characteristics typically frowned upon by the traditional school format aren’t weaknesses.

Senior Youth Housing Support Worker Sally Garner said she found a lot of relevance in what David was presenting and has already started applying some of his philosophy to her work and personal life.

“We were very proud to partner with various other organisations to bring David to Perth.”

“I really enjoyed the day and took a lot from hearing him speak,” she said.

“It is important, particularly when taking a youth focus, that we talk to young people and let them know that their so-called weaknesses are actually unique, personal strengths,” she said.

“I have joined his mailing list, purchased his second book and now follow him on Facebook.” Senior Job Search Australia employee Kelly Tillett agreed.

ABOVE: David Rendall with Kwinana City Mayor Carol Adams

“As a community worker I think it’s important to release that not everyone conforms to a traditional way of learning.” “My Job Search Australia and Disability Employment Service teams both took a lot away from the seminar.” If you would like further information on upcoming Bridging the Gap events please visit For more information on David visit 

EntertainmentTM Books Make Great Gifts for Mother’s Day For decades the Entertainment™ Book has featured the best restaurants, cafes, accommodation, attractions and activities the West has to offer, and all at fabulously discounted prices.

restaurants to hairstylists, retail providers, wineries and more!

Purchase the latest Perth Entertainment Book from Bridging the Gap for just $65 and you’ll receive over $15,000 in vouchers valid until June, 2014.

Lemona Bungurov Phone: (08) 9550 1111 Email:


Proceeds from your Entertainment™ Book purchase will help fund our vital community programs such as Crossing Point, ASPIRE and Ngulla Nursery. For more information on these programs please visit our website.

This year’s book includes vouchers Mum will love from her favourite cafés and

To order your book or for more information, please contact:

BTG BULLETIN | Issue 4 |May 2013



Job Futures Awards JSA National Accolade Congratulations to Job Search Australia Regional Manager Jane McWhirter and her Rockingham team for taking out the Excellence and Sustainability Awards at the annual Job Futures Conference, held in Adelaide during March. Bridging the Gap’s Job Services Australia team as a whole also took out the 2013 Job Futures Excellence Award.

ABOVE: Perth Wildcat and Bridging the Gap Youth Worker Brad Robbins presents prizes to two lucky raffle winners.

Raising Funds in 3D Bridging the Gap’s family fundraising screening of The Croods in 3D went off without a hitch at United Cinemas in Rockingham on April 24. Patrons were greeted by National Basketball League and Wildcats legend, Brad Robbins and children were invited to get their faces painted.

ABOVE: Bridging the Gap’s Tania O’Dea (top centre) and Chief Executive Colin Kerr (bottom centre) join representatives from JSA providers around the country for the 2013 Job Futures Conference.

Youth & Community Manager Appointed to National Network

Chief Executive Colin Kerr said all profits raised on the day will go toward the organisation’s various community programs, such as Ngulla Nursery and the Aspire Kwinana Families Project in Kwinana.

On behalf of the entire team at Bridging the Gap, we extend thanks to: AMF Bowling Rockingham, Brushwork Face and Body Painting, Fremantle Dockers Football Club, Jungle Zone, The Fairies, Meadows Dental Care Rockingham, Object Framers, Officeworks, Sports Stars and Legends, Supa IGA Port Kennedy, Medina IGA, United Cinemas Rockingham and the Western Australian Museum.

Fundraising ventures like this are important because they ensure its continued operation.” “Aspire, for example, is a service specifically designed to assist families stuck in intergenerational, long-term unemployment,” he said.


Hats off to Bridging the Gap’s own Linda Colley who has just been appointed Deputy Chair of the State Network and Metropolitan Representative on the National Network for Youth Connections. Congratulations Linda!

Mr Kerr said the organisation was very thankful to the large crowd who turned out to show their support to Bridging the Gap. “Our sponsors need particular mention, for without them this wouldn’t have been possible,” he said.

ABOVE: Five-year-old Lochlan was the lucky recipient of a team signed Wildcats basketball after taking out first prize in the BTG raffle.

BTG BULLETIN | Issue 4 |May 2013


You and your business Bridging the Gap’s five star rated Job Services Australia team has a proven track record in assisting employers from multiple industries secure work ready team members. Job Search Australia Regional Manager Jane McWhirter said her team was in regular contact with employers from around the state who were struggling with high staff turn over. “What we’re hearing more and more is that companies are experiencing difficulty in acquiring employees that have a solid company fit,” she said. “This means they’re having to recruit more and more at significant cost to themselves.” Ms McWhirter said Bridging the Gap offers employment services for companies seeking work ready employees. “Our jobseekers complete onsite work preparation with our accredited trainer and through this and our ongoing support services we really get to know their strengths and weaknesses,” she said. “This empowers us to ensure we are finding employees who are going to be a suitable and sustainable fit for employers.”

New Beginnings for Immigrants to Western Australia with BTG New Beginnings is an Australian Immigration Support Program that assists those new to Western Australia, or those planning to emigrate, secure employment and sponsorship opportunities.

Modutech Director Rob Lyons enlisted the support of Bridging the Gap after his design and manufacturing company listed a job vacancy.

Bridging the Gap Job Futures Regional Manager Jane McWhirter said the innovative, personalised program is designed to guide those new to Australia through the process of finding work.

“The team at Bridging the Gap assisted me in securing several strong candidates,” he said.

“Western Australia has the fastest growing population in the whole country,” she said.

“From there, we employed a Bridging the Gap recommended jobseeker who has been part of our team ever since.”

“Skilled migrants are relocating here at a rate of about 1000 per week, most of them to Perth, and what we’re finding is they’re struggling to navigate their way through the job market.”

as to where to go for assistance in gaining international skills recognition. “I had heard about the Immigration Employment Information Session through a friend who had found it helpful,” he said. “The team at New Beginnings arranged for me to get a white card and international recognition of my existing qualifications.” Our experienced team of immigration professionals assisted Mr Magee apply for various jobs and he was employed fulltime within a few short weeks.

Bulletin If you would like further information on how Bridging the Gap’s Job Search Australia team can assist you, please contact Stacey Stonebanks on 9550 1111. 

Jim Magee was one of those people.

Arriving from Northern Ireland in 2012, this skilled tradesman said the immigration system left him feeling extremely confused

“I can’t thank the immigration team at Bridging the Gap enough,” he said.

If you would like to find out more about our one-on-one Immigration Employment Information Sessions please contact Jane McWhirter on (08) 9550 1111 or via email 

BTG BULLETIN | Issue 4 |May 2013


Awards Honour Star Employers and Employees Bridging the Gap hosted its annual awards night on Tuesday April 2, honouring the hard work and success of local young people, our clients and volunteers with Brieanne Lee, Bryan Stokes, Kelly Scott, Madelyn Allen and Troy Dawson all taking out awards in their respective categories. Bridging the Gap Chief Executive Colin Kerr acknowledged the hard work of every nominee and extended his congratulations to the award winners. “We’re extremely proud to present awards in the categories of Employer of the Year, Employee of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Youth and Achievement,” he said. “We service clients from all walks of life and it is very humbling to hear their unique success stories and to learn how Bridging the Gap has assisted them in their journey.” Brieanne Lee, who took out the 2013 Youth Award, first joined Bridging the Gap in 2012 as part of the Early Youth Engagement program which was created

to assist young people who had graduated Year 12, but were yet to have a clear pathway in terms of study, training or employment. Youth and Community Assistant Manager Nicola Squires said Brie proved herself to be a top performer throughout the program and went on to participate in a Crossing Point Expedition.

award recipients recognised for all their hard work. “We wish them every success in the future,” she said. On behalf of the entire team at Bridging the Gap, we’d like to congratulate each award winner for their inspirational approaches to life, employment and social responsibility. 

“Throughout her Crossing Point journey, Brie was provided with the necessary tools to identify her personal and social responsibilities, and honing in on her natural leadership ability saw her be a successful motivator for others,” Ms Squires said. “Upon graduation from the Crossing Point program, Brie has found employment with a major company in the region and has very much remained a part of the Crossing Point family, becoming an active member of the alumni.” Ms Squires said it gave her great personal satisfaction to see Brie, and the other

Bulletin CLOCKWISE FROM TOP RIGHT: Bridging the Gap’s CEO Colin Kerr (left) and Nicola Squires (right) with Youth Award recipient Brieanne Lee, ASPIRE’s Nick Gwynn (left) with Kelly Scott (centre) and Colin Kerr, the 2013 Awards Night winners pictured with various BTG team members and David Nelson, Colin Kerr with Troy Dawson (centre) and Job Search Australia team member Tania O’Dea.

BTG Bulletin Editor:

Chloe Lawler |


Farrah Millar

10 Leghorn Street, Rockingham WA 6168 PO Box 675, Rockingham WA 6968 Phone: (08) 9550 1111 | Fax: (08) 9592 8217

BTG Bulletin - Edition 4 May 2013  

Our bi-monthly e-newsletter featuring the latest news from Bridging the Gap Inc.