Multiplex launches Canberra Connectivity Centre

L-R: Jo Osborne Connectivity Centre, Jane Curran Multiplex, Martin Little Major Projects Canberra, Kristy Masella Aboriginal Employment Strategy, Colm Mooney Canberra Health Services, and Brendan Sweeney Multiplex.

Multiplex has officially launched the Canberra Connectivity Centre, a Multiplex initiative to match locals to job opportunities arising from the Canberra Hospital Expansion project.

The Centre is a physical and virtual space where job seekers, employers, government agencies, training firms and community groups can come together to co-design their own training, employment and support solutions.

Multiplex Regional Managing Director David Ghannoum says the opening of the Centre is a whole-of community response to a local need.

“Job seekers need access to sustainable job opportunities and job providers need help connecting with good employers,” he said. “The Connectivity Centre bridges that gap through cross sector collaboration and a coordinated focus on creating holistic and sustainable change.”

The Centre offers job support services, trainee and apprenticeships, business mentoring, and networking opportunities, with a particular emphasis on engaging with disability groups, youth at risk, long term unemployed, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander groups.

Located in the ACT Government’s Construction Employment Hub in the Woden town centre, the Canberra Connectivity Centre is the 14th Connectivity Centre coordinated by Multiplex in as many years.

Multiplex Connectivity Centres provide a backbone support structure to optimise social procurement opportunities for Multiplex’s supply chain.

Already, the Canberra Centre has placed 15 candidates into apprenticeships and other roles with early works trades on the Canberra Hospital project, including six traineeships with formwork contractor Oakdale.

Mark Gusse, Work Health and Safety Coordinator at Oakdale says Oakdale has been involved with Multiplex Connectivity Centres for over five years and has helped support multiple candidates through projects.

“When you meet the candidates at the start of the project and before, the difference in their confidence and the way they go about their day is incredible to witness,” says Mr Gusse. “It’s been a real joy to see them develop and grow.”

Kristy Masella, the CEO of Aboriginal Employment Strategy who will co-locate at the Centre, said it would create life-changing outcomes for people in Canberra.

“The Connectivity Centre model is next generation thinking, providing a truly holistic service that is unparalleled,” she said.

Over 15 years, Multiplex has collaborated with international scholars and universities and undertaken three Australian Research Council (ARC) Federal Grants, to study and refine its approach.

“We know our Connectivity Centres are having an impact – not just on employment but also things like mental health and wellbeing, skills and knowledge, and social interactions,” said Mr Ghannoum. “In that way it’s building community resilience too.”

“This is not a set and forget scenario. We take seriously our role in creating positive social outcomes in the communities we work in and look forward to continuing that legacy in Canberra.”

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