Six students have graduated from a unique training program, designed to produce job-ready workers for the mining industry.
The program is a joint Kokatha Aboriginal Corporation and TAFE SA initiative. The course was purpose-built in 2017 after the Kokatha Aboriginal Corporation identified there was a shortage of skilled workers available to work on the Carrapateena Mine site.
In 2018 nine students graduated, with many of them gaining full-time employment at Carrapateena. As of August, six more people have qualifications that will lead them to employment. The next course is already being planned due to demand.
Kokatha Aboriginal Corporation, chairperson, Glen Wingfield said Kokatha continues to work closely with Oz Minerals, the operators of the mine.
"Kokatha are the traditional owners of the country at Carrapateena, and we are pleased to be able to work with ISS and Oz Minerals to ensure Kokatha and other Aboriginal people are able to be employed," said Mr Wingfield.
Mr Wingfield said that the training program has provided skills and opportunities for local Aboriginal people.
"Kokatha Aboriginal Corporation is working to bring about generational change to deliver prosperity to our people. Training and jobs is a big part of that," he said.
TAFE SA's Marg Mibus said the program has been successful because it caters to students as unique individuals.
"Our students attend every day and they know there is the reward of a job opportunity at the end," she said.
Training included subjects like managing finances, basic job skills practices, First Aid, gaining a White Card and enhancing communication skills.
ISS, which delivers mining village services, like catering, cleaning, security and logistics has partnered with Kokatha Aboriginal Corporation to deliver staff to Carrapateena.
They have also ensured that overnight site visits and on the job training are part of the course. As a result conversion to employment has been 100 per cent.