The Gippsland East Local Learning and Employment Network (GELLEN) are working with Lakes Entrance Secondary College to undertake the CATCH Program with seventeen Year 9 students, aimed at increasing both engagement with education, and career aspirations. 

The CATCH Program will take place every Monday throughout Terms 2 and 3 this year, and will be primarily located at the SEAMEC facility on Bullock Island. 

The first session each day will be in a classroom, utilising a work-readiness program (Project Ready) that has been developed by the Central Ranges LLEN and run successfully in schools in their catchment area (around Seymour/Wallan/Kyneton areas).  It is a very positive program that looks to build the students’ self-worth and resilience through personal development activities, and to help them discover their passions and strengths. 

There will be a series of guest speakers and other activities planned for the mid-morning that will build on the ideas and learnings from the first session, and then, in the afternoon, activities with various community groups and agencies.  

The first day of the program was Monday, April 29, and the students were introduced to the Project Ready program. Members of the Lakes Entrance Lions Club worked with the students to prepare a meal, and then to clean up afterwards!  This was followed by an introductory Drumbeat session.

In the coming weeks, the students will be meeting with many local business owners, and larger organisations who will provide the students with a greater understanding of what jobs are available in our region.  Local organisations and groups have also indicated their willingness to work within the project to create a stronger connection between the students and the community.  

Lakes Entrance Secondary College is very enthusiastic about the opportunities offered to the students through this program, as are the team at GELLEN.

“We are very excited to be working with the College, and with the students particularly,” Pam Waters, GELLEN Project Coordinator, said. “We are working towards building the students’ knowledge and skills and providing them with relevant information to set them on the path to their future world of work.”