TroubleSmiths released its first evaluation report back in October. It was a joint effort between the University of Tasmania, Impact Communities, and Workskills Inc.

TroubleSmiths is a Tasmanian youth employment initiative aimed at 15- to 24-year-olds from across southern Tasmania who are disengaged from education and at risk of long-term unemployment.

“[The report highlights] how working in a real-world social enterprise empowered participants by enabling them to contribute to their community,” Institute for the Study of Social Change Director Professor Richard Eccleston says.

The report also includes ideas on how TroubleSmiths might continue to offer opportunities to young Tasmanians.

According to the report, 146 people participated in the program between July 2017 and June 2019, during which it was funded by the Federal Government. It explains that the employability skills of these participants improved from doing the program.

This is a significant achievement and the participants should be proud of themselves.

Click here to read the full report: https://www.utas.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/1283547/isc-troublesmiths-report-oct-2019.pdf.

But participating in TroubleSmiths is not the only way young people can gain and/or develop their work skills.

Volunteering

Another way is volunteering, defined by Volunteering Australia as “time willingly given for the common good and without financial gain.”

It also improves opportunities for employment.

“Volunteering is an invaluable way to gain experience for a future career as well as to build your network,” says Ornella Dandolo who volunteers at Volunteering Tasmania.

According to the 2019 State of Volunteering Report, nearly 300,000 Tasmanians (or 68.6% of the state’s population) have volunteered during 2019, donating at least 68.2 million hours.

Hamlet, A Social Enterprise

Hamlet Café in Hobart has a team of paid staff who deliver the training to work experience participants.

Working at the café provides the participants with real-like work experience so they can develop transferrable skills and build their confidence.

“Hamlet allows people in our community a safe space to grow and feel empowered, all because someone is giving them a go, it’s a beautiful thing to witness,” owner Emily Briffa says.

It truly is a beautiful thing.