Training Team Growth

Training Team Growth

Outback Stores’ training team in Darwin has recently grown to include two new training officers, Carmel Geia and Josephine Baker.

Carmel went to boarding school in Townsville but has family living in Numbulwar, a remote community in the Gulf of Carpentaria. Josephine is from Milingimbi Island, off the coast of Arnhem Land.

“It’s good to have started here at the same time as Josephine, because we can learn from each other,” says Carmel.

They join training team leader Dotty Repu, to support her in the compliance and data entry needed to satisfy the certified training requirements of the Australian Skills Quality Authority.

“It has been a huge help having them join the team. We’re ticking our compliance boxes much quicker now,” said Dotty.

Carmel and Josephine’s roles are based in the Darwin Support Office, but they also travel to community occasionally to support the in-person training. Since starting in August they have visited Ngukurr community in the Roper River Region, and they hope to visit some communities in Western Australia soon.

This year the training team have helped 25 trainees to successfully complete either a Certificate II, III or IV in retail qualifications. Those students who have completed the highest qualification are now taking more responsibility in store and providing support for new team members.

Shkarra and Matt

Top: Josephine Baker, Carmel Geia and Dotty Repu
Bottom: The training team at their staff Christmas Party 2023. Carmel Geia, Craig Boxall, Emma Sykba, Tammy Stephens, Josephine Baker, Dotty Repu (from left to right).

Ngurratjuta Training Project

Ngurratjuta Training Project

Lornie Multa from Haasts Bluff (Ikuntji) is the first trainee to complete her Certificate II in Retail as part of the Ngurratjuta Training Project.

Lornie was awarded her certificate this week at Kanparrka Store and says that now she has finished she is keen to start Certificate III in Retail Management.

“I want to learn to be a supervisor then to be a manager. I am ready to start more training,” says Lornie.

Store manager Dee Micallef has observed the benefits of this certified training.

“Because of the knowledge through this program Lornie is more confident and is an asset to the store. She uses her initiative and is a team member I can depend on,” says Dee.

This project is an initiative of the Ngurratjuta/Pmara Aboriginal Corporation who have partnered with Outback Stores to improve Indigenous employment and training outcomes in remote communities.

Shkarra and Matt

Top: Lornie Multa awarded her certificate by Tammy Stephens
Bottom: Dee Micallef, Lornie Multa and Tammy Stephens (left to right)

The trainees are staying long term at the store, they’re learning and understanding more of the retail environment, and are enjoying coming to work.”

– Craig Shaw

Lornie was awarded her certificate this week by Craig Shaw, CDP Manager of Ngurratjuta/Pmara Ntjarra Aboriginal Corporation, who is pleased with the result of the first year of this project.

“The learning of cultural, shop and computer-based training works hand in hand with jobseekers. The trainees are staying long term at the store, they’re learning and understanding more of the retail environment, and are enjoying coming to work,” says Craig.

The project is based between four nearby communities (Papunya, Nyirripi, Haasts Bluff and Mount Liebig), allowing for continuous training despite the often-transient populations. There are currently nine trainees studying across the four locations.

Training Officer Tammy Stephens is based in Papunya but divides her time between the four communities.

“Lornie has been a pleasure to train. She is dedicated to her job and improving her role at the store. I look forward to training Lornie in the future and watching her achieve her goals,” says Tammy.

Ashley and Karen in Car Photo

Top: Lornie completing training modules online, assisted by Tammy
Bottom: Celebratory sausage sizzle after award ceremony on Wednesday 13th Dec 2023