Learn Local Awards highlight outstanding training achievements across Victoria

  • Learn Locals re-engage vulnerable residents in education and training
  • More Victorians facing barriers to education are enrolled in job ready training
  • Napthine Government building a better training system for all Victorians

A woman keen to take a more active role on her Wimmera farm, a program enhancing digital literacy in Gippsland communities and an initiative supporting new migrants in Melbourne’s west are among this year’s Learn Local Award winners.

During a ceremony at St Kilda Town Hall last night, Minister for Higher Education and Skills Nick Wakeling congratulated the winners of the seven award categories, who shared in a $50,000 prize pool.

Mr Wakeling said Learn Local organisations engage with learners traditionally facing barriers to education and enable them to develop the skills to pursue employment or further training.

“There are more than 300 Learn Local organisations across Victoria and these awards reflect the strength of Victoria’s modern and dynamic training industry,” Mr Wakeling said.

“This year’s Outstanding Pre-Accredited Learner of the Year winner Lisa Stimson reinforces the role Learn Local organisations play in making a difference in the lives of their students.

“Lisa was not from a farming background and participated in LINK Neighbourhood House’s Women in Ag project to build her knowledge of farming and her professional networks.

“This training has significantly improved Lisa’s confidence and the future prospects for her business,” Mr Wakeling said.

The Victorian Coalition Government recognises the importance of community based training organisations with overall funding for Learn Locals increasing by 154 per cent since 2010, to $85.9 million.

Since 2010, more Victorians traditionally facing difficulties entering the job market are participating in training, with:

Indigenous student numbers up 43 per cent to 4,180;

Culturally and linguistically diverse student numbers up 109 per cent to 94,200; and

Students with a disability up 58 per cent to 28,400.

Mr Wakeling said that at 72 per cent, more students across Victoria’s vocational training system are also training in areas of skill shortage or employment growth than ever before.

“The Napthine Government is investing almost $5 billion over the next four years to ensure all Victorians develop the skills that lead to meaningful and rewarding careers.”

The 2014 Learn Local Award winners are:

Outstanding Pathways Program – Emerging Cultural Leaders Program, Footscray Community Arts Centre

Outstanding Learner – Lisa Stimson, LINK Neighbourhood House, Kaniva

Outstanding Practitioner – Tony Senese, Prahran Community Learning Centre Inc

Excellence in Creating Local Solutions – Wyndam Community and Education Centre

Innovation in Digital Literacy – Traralgon Neighbourhood House

Learn Local for Business – Kyabram Community and Learning Centre

Learn Local Legends –


Ballarat Neighbourhood Centre

Southern Grampians Adult Education

Shepparton Access

Sandybeach Centre

Upper Yarra Community House

Campaspe College of Adult Education (CCAE)

Kensington Neighbourhood House

Media contact: Madeleine Babiolakis 0428 833 571 madeleine.babiolakis@minstaff.vic.gov.au


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