Over 40 employer, stakeholder and government representatives gathered today with residents of Kemira, an award winning Aged Care and Disability collaborative located in Kanahooka, to celebrate the launch of the new Aged Care, Disability & Community (ACDC) sectors Employer Toolkit. The ACDC Employer Toolkit was developed with industry input by Regional Development Australia (RDA) - Illawarra, in conjunction with the NSW Government.

The Toolkit was created in direct response to feedback from Illawarra organisations, supported by RDA Illawarra research, regarding the current and future challenges in attracting and retaining suitable employees in the ACDC sectors at a local level.

The toolkit was launched by Gareth Ward MP, Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra and South Coast at Kemira, an award winning Aged Care and Disability collaborative located in Kanahooka.

Gareth Ward said “the NSW Government is pleased to support the ACDC Project.  It’s great to see this initiative deliver tangible outcomes to employers, and I commend the Employer Toolkit as a source of inspiration on how to meet the growing Aged Care and Disability workforce needs.”

RDA-Illawarra initiated a workforce survey which conservatively identified growth in the next 3 years of 35% in the Aged Care and 43% in the Disability sectors.  These sectors provide fantastic opportunities for potential employees, with over 2,750 new jobs to fill in the Illawarra market in the next 3 years.

Craig Hamer, IRT Group Director – Journey of Care, welcomed attendees to the Kemira site and reflected how Kemira represents a great example of collaboration between organisations (IRT, Interchange Illawarra, Greenacres, & Community Gateway) to achieve a beneficial community outcome.

Craig Thomson, CEO Community Gateway, then spoke about the benefits that the Toolkit represents for employers in assisting with conversations with potential candidates and providing a source of inspiration with case studies highlighting the variety of innovative ways in which local organisations within these sectors are addressing the challenges of workforce recruitment and retention.

Margaret Biggs from The Disability Trust interviewed Nick Kyriakoudes, a former TIGS student, who was first introduced to the disability sector by participating in the TIGS Sony Foundation Camp, which led to part-time work with The Disability Trust whilst studying at university.

Copies of the Employer Toolkit can be obtained by contacting RDA-Illawarra, or download from here.