A new partnership will secure substantial economic, employment and education benefits for Riverina communities as part of critical clean energy infrastructure projects in the region.
Transgrid and Regional Development Australia (RDA) Riverina have formed a $1.5 million Workforce Development Strategic Partnership to deliver a major jobs and skills boost as the region becomes a hub for the country’s renewable energy transformation.
It follows the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the two organisations to drive workforce development and economic growth initiatives for the Riverina as part of Transgrid’s EnergyConnect, HumeLink and VNI West projects.
Transgrid CEO Brett Redman said the energy infrastructure leader is delighted to provide $1.5 million for a range of RDA Riverina initiatives across the region.
“We are building the transmission super-highway which will transform the energy supply for millions of Australians and the Riverina is in the driver’s seat with our major clean energy projects centred on the region,” Mr Redman said.
“Transgrid’s EnergyConnect, HumeLink and VNI West projects will bring significant economic, employment and education opportunities to the Riverina and we are committed to making a positive difference for the local community.
“We are delighted to form this partnership to help create jobs, expand education and training opportunities particularly for youth, attract new workers, develop skills, and drive other workforce and economic growth initiatives to maximise the benefits for the Riverina.”
Transgrid’s $1.5 million funding boost will support RDA Riverina programs over the next three years including:
- Riverina Liveability Hub – expand its nation-leading Country Change campaign to attract people to the Riverina for work, education and recreation by including another six local government areas
- Riverina Workforce Hub – expand the JobsRiverina online employment site to include the Murray region to help local businesses attract new staff and skills, and
- Youth Pathways – expand its successful Grow Our Own program into the Eastern Riverina to encourage local businesses to invest in local people particularly youth through employment, training, mentoring and motivational opportunities.
RDA Riverina CEO and Director of Regional Development Rachel Whiting welcomed Transgrid’s support for its detailed Workforce Development Plan.
“Transgrid has taken an opportunity to strengthen these existing projects, bolstering and expanding place-based solutions that benefit its projects and the greater community,” Ms Whiting said.
“Further developing existing projects and programs builds on established relationships and investments with local businesses and extended networks. This can only benefit local business and community.”
Under the MoU, Transgrid and RDA Riverina will work in partnership to:
- Maximise opportunities from energy infrastructure and Renewable Energy Zone projects
- Identify and develop strategies to address employment and skill shortages
- Offer and support skills and training initiatives, and
- Assist research and advocacy projects on issues of concern including housing and accommodation, labour and skills shortages, and infrastructure challenges.