Funding announcements

13 June 2021: Continuation of Skilling Queenslanders for Work announced.
19 August 2021: Application window for 2021–22 funding round now closed.

Work Skills Traineeships provide paid employment opportunities to disadvantaged Queenslanders while at the same time funding projects that leave a visible and long lasting impact on social infrastructure and services in a local community. For example, projects can: create, repair and upgrade public spaces and facilities; undertake revegetation, regeneration and river or foreshore restorations, or: service the community through not-for-profit retail and hospitality outlets.

Project overview

In 2021–22, $37.05 million in funding will be available under Work Skills Traineeships to give long-term unemployed and disadvantaged job seekers access to tailored employment assistance and employment on community, public works and environmental projects.

Through Work Skills Traineeships, participants are employed full-time as entry-level trainees on work placement projects. There are 5 types of traineeships available at the certificate I level:

Work Skills TraineeshipsQualification
Business BSB10120 Certificate I in Workplace Skills
Construction CPC10120 Certificate I in Construction
Conservation and land management AHC10116 Certificate I in Conservation and Land Management
Hospitality SIT10216 Certificate I in Hospitality
Retail servicesSIR10116 Certificate I in Retail Services

Participants will:

  • earn a certificate I level qualification in business, construction, conservation and land management, hospitality or retail services
  • gain practical experience in real work situations that align with their training
  • complete paid work that can be included in their resumes
  • receive a mix of career advice, job preparation skills and foundation skills.

Funded projects

For job seekers, the best way to find a current Skilling Queenslanders for Work project is by navigating a map.

To view projects recently announced under the Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative, go to the funded project lists.

Job seekers unite on food rescue project
Job seekers unite on food rescue project

Who does the program support?

Work Skills Traineeships primarily targets Queensland residents who either:

  • are ineligible for Australian Government employment services or assistance, or
  • require complementary services because they have significant barriers to learning and employment, or
  • have accessed Australian Government services for more than 6 months and remain unemployed.

Work Skills Traineeships are focused on developing vocational and employability skills for long term unemployed and disadvantaged job seekers and providing them with a pathway to employment.

What can the program funds be used for?

Work Skills Traineeships funding can only be expended on costs directly associated with the delivery of the project including:

  • wages and on-costs for project coordinator and other delivery staff, trainee wages and on-costs for Work Skills Traineeships projects
  • administration costs such as rent, accommodation, venue hire, office supplies, advertising, travel costs, vehicle hire/lease
  • materials and equipment
  • overheads or operating costs (with the management fee not to exceed 5% of total funds).

What types of projects can be funded?

Work Skills Traineeships projects could include:

  • revegetation, regeneration and creek/river restoration works - repairs to riverbanks and foreshores
  • refurbishment of community buildings (not private residences) - sporting halls, aged care facilities, social enterprises, community centres and halls
  • minor infrastructure works - pergolas, seating, fencing, picnic tables and pre-fabricated structures
  • re-development of community spaces - sporting fields and parks requiring general landscaping and horticulture type works i.e. creation of garden beds, vegetable gardens, planting
  • track construction - construction of walking tracks, paving and pathways, or improvements to existing tracks
  • media activities - publication of community newsletters/magazines, or the development of a community website
  • event management activities - organising community careers expos, community workshops or cultural celebrations
  • community retail and hospitality outlets - providing customer service in not-for-profit organisations or council owned and operated social enterprise cafes, restaurants, tourism centres, opportunity shops, recycling centres and plant nurseries
  • host placement (with not-for-profit organisations only) - this model should be the exception rather than the norm, and is usually reserved for Work Skills Business Traineeships where it may be difficult to place a large number of participants at one work site, or to assist groups such as people with
    disability or from a culturally and linguistically diverse background.

Each project or intake must range in length or duration between 18-26 weeks.

Who can apply for funding?

Local councils, volunteer organisations, neighbourhood centres, youth, sporting, church and environmental organisations, peak industry bodies and other advocacy groups that can organise relevant projects that benefit the broader community are encouraged to apply for Work Skills Traineeships funding.

The delivery of training and assessment services for Work Skills Traineeships is funded under the User Choice program. A supervising registered training organisation (SRTO) must be engaged to provide training and assessment services to the trainees in line with their training plan. The SRTO must be
approved as a Skills Assure supplier (SAS) under the User Choice program. Work Skills Traineeships are fully exempt from student contribution fees under User Choice.

Organisation checklist

Organisations applying for funding to deliver Work Skills Traineeship projects will need to:

  • contact the local DESBT regional office to discuss the application (call 1300 369 935)
  • demonstrate previous success in delivering similar programs and achieving outcomes or demonstrate capacity to manage and locally deliver a work placement project
  • have the support and appropriate approval from council or other community/government agencies to undertake works if on public lands or involving works to public buildings
  • employ, or be able to employ, suitably experienced and qualified staff to provide appropriate supervision, training and support to participants
  • offer a variety of work activities, in line with the Work Skills Traineeship being undertaken, to ensure participants acquire a broad range of skills that will increase their competiveness in the job market and assist them to secure ongoing employment
  • allow sufficient time for participants to learn new skills and establish a routine of attending work, in a supportive but structured environment.

How to apply

Applications are accepted during two open funding rounds each year.

First and second rounds generally open February/March and August/September respectively.

To learn more about the application process and how to apply, go to the Skilling Queenslanders for Work applications page.

Program documents

Work Skills Traineeships Guidelines for funding 2021–22 (PDF, 479KB)

Work Skills Traineeships 2021–22 fact sheet (PDF, 2971KB)

Sample Skilling Queenslanders for Work Services Agreement (PDF, 616KB)

Contact information

For general enquiries about Skilling Queenslanders for Work, email or phone 1300 369 935.

Community-based organisations with specific enquiries about a Work Skills Traineeships application should contact their local DESBT regional office or the Skilling Queenslanders for Work team at

Related information

Last updated 23 June 2021

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