Stephen Bull

1 August 2012 – Disadvantaged young people will gain work and life skills courtesy of a three-year partnership between Stockland and The Beacon Foundation.

Stockland Commercial Property will sponsor Beacon’s nationwide program by hosting “Stockland Uncovered” education workshops for secondary school students at nine Stockland shopping centres in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia.

The centres are Stockland Merrylands, Shellharbour, Green Hills, Townsville, Traralgon, Point Cook, Highlands, Bull Creek and Riverton.

Stockland Development, design and sustainability general manager Stephen Bull said the partnership would help 1200 Beacon students by providing them with practical work experience and skills in areas including technology, visual merchandising, logistics and sustainability.

“Through our new partnership with Beacon, we are effectively opening our doors to students and inviting them to explore many rewarding career opportunities,” he said.

“By giving them insight into the day-to-day lives of our retailers, centre staff, and contractors, we hope to share valuable industry knowledge that will inspire them to reach their full potential.”

Youth unemployment is at 20 per cent – more than five times the national unemployment rate – with about 48,200 young people aged between 15 and 19 years looking for employment every year.

The Beacon Foundation chief executive Scott Harris said the partnership was “a significant commitment to reach hundreds of students in schools across Australia, and provide them with workplace experiences, personal skills and employability knowledge that helps them to secure real jobs, dignity and self-respect”.

The program will involve activities such as career and life skills workshops, mock interviews, industry tours, business representative involvement in the classroom and one-on-one mentoring.