More fee free training available to help women into the workforce in 2024

The Certificate I in New Opportunities for Women (NOW) course has been added to the fee free list for 2024, as part of the State Government’s expanded measures to boost access to foundation skills training to support increased vocational education and training (VET) and workforce participation for under-represented groups.

The NOW course has been developed specifically to help Western Australian women — who have been out of paid employment for a long period or who are considering VET pathways — to refresh and boost their skills to be job-ready.

The program provides participants with the opportunity to explore various career options, build self-confidence and gain the necessary foundation skills — such as reading, writing and maths — to progress to other VET courses or take up entry-level jobs.

NOW is open to women of all ages and backgrounds and provides full-time or part-time training options with flexible hours to suit women with family responsibilities.

To further support women participate in training and the workforce, special provisions have been made to fully subsidise the resource fees associated with undertaking the course, providing equal access to all Western Australian women.

Julie Lang and Rajni Kaushik recently completed the NOW course at North Metropolitan TAFE’s Midland campus.

Julie, a mother and grandmother, had a previous workplace injury that resulted in time out of the workforce, and was also experiencing some personal challenges.

"I was feeling disconnected and had no sense of belonging or achievement," she said.

Despite her initial nerves, Julie felt NOW was the path to transforming her life.

"I was looking through the internet and job advertisements and saw the North Metropolitan TAFE course New Opportunities for Women. I took the first step in changing the path of my life and enrolled in the NOW program.

"My first day of the course I was anxious and nervous, but after about five minutes into the course I felt that this was the right place for me.

"The course has given me some confidence for the future with skills to either continue to study or apply for jobs," she said.

Rajni, a mother of two, has been away from the workforce for 12 years raising her family.

Rajni has a background in Information Technology (IT) where she taught IT languages in India before relocating to Australia. She took the course to reconnect with the workforce.

"I hadn’t studied for 16 years and haven’t worked for 12 years after having two kids.

"I also didn’t have much experience working in Australia and was looking to get back into the workforce, but I wanted to see where I sat and what had changed.

"The course was really helpful — the teacher was great — it is very good if you don’t know where or how to start."

The NOW course has allowed Rajni to develop a plan to secure a job in 2024.

"I am going to start looking for a job that suits my skills and am also open to more study next year.

“I am planning to undertake either a business administration course or Certificate I in Gaining Access to Training and Employment (GATE) course."

For more information about NOW and other training opportunities, use our course search or contact your nearest Jobs and Skills Centre on 13 64 64.