In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, IllawarraYES is taking every precaution to ensure the health and safety of program participants by following current NSW government guidelines. For further advice, please don’t hesitate to contact our program coordinator on 0408 937 070 

Get Involved

Are you a recent school-leaver looking for an exciting start to a career, close to home, in one of the Illawarra’s growth sectors?

Do you know a young person who needs a great way to begin their career, supported by some of our best employers and a team of training professionals? 

If you would like more information or are interested in being involved in the IllawarraYES program, please complete your details below and we will contact you as soon as possible.

About IllawarraYES

Since 2016, the IllawarraYES Coordinator, appointed by the Illawarra Business Chamber (IBC) and funded by the NSW Government has been working with local employers, youth organisations, government, and Registered Training Organisations to meet business skill shortages while providing real work opportunities for young people.

The IllawarraYES program focuses on building entry level employment pathways for young people, comprised of vocational training, employability skills and work experience as well as on-the-job mentoring and support.

The IllawarraYES program also assists business to meet identified skill shortages.  It seeks to prepare, skill and trial young job seekers prior to employment, by coordinating government funded training and job readiness programs including work experience, tailored to business and industry requirements.

The IllawarraYES Coordinator partners with local business and industry to achieve successful training and employment outcomes across Local Government, Construction, Hospitality, Aged Care, Call Centre and Transport sectors, supporting skills shortage and key growth areas.

Current Programs

Bundanon Work Readiness Program

IllawarraYES and the Shoalhaven Youth into Work Initiative are working with the Bundanon Trust to prepare people for exciting roles at the upcoming Art Museum, with formal training delivered in October 2021.

The program will include training at Bomaderry TAFE in hospitality, customer service, tourism and housekeeping, plus a day of work experience to prepare for roles at the Riversdale Masterplan Project on the banks of the Shoalhaven River.

Productivity Bootcamp

IllawarraYES and Productivity Bootcamp are offering an 8-week program that will arm young people with the skills and work values they need to gain employment in the Construction industry.

Commencing in the Shoalhaven in October 2021, the program focuses on trade related skills and uses a unique style of hands-on, practical training from experienced tradespeople delivered in outdoor construction yards, so that participants get to experience what working in the industry is really like.

Defence Industry Workforce Program

The IllawarraYES Shoalhaven Defence Industry Workforce Program aims to prepare people for work in the Defence industry through a 9-week course and 4-week work placement.

Training includes a Certificate I in Engineering delivered at Bomaderry TAFE, and will cover units such as work safety, welding, manual handling, engineering measurements, using hand and power tools, and training on applying for jobs.

Upcoming Programs

Transport & Logistics Program

Kickstart your career in the Transport and Logistics industry, with a new and exciting program program delivered by IllawarraYES, J2S Training Solutions and Onsite Training and Assessment in November 2021.

Training units will cover:

  • Use info technology devices in the workplace
  • Complete receival and despatch documentation
  • Organise receival and despatch operations
  • Participate in basic workplace communication
  • Licence to operate a forklift truck

Productivity Bootcamp ACCELERATED

Learn skills in carpentry, electrical, plumbing, formwork, concreting, landscaping and more!

Productivity Bootcamp will be delivering a condensed 5-week program giving participants the skills they need to secure an apprenticeship in 2022.

The ACCELERATE program will start in November 2021 and has limited places available, so send an expression of interest to secure your spot now.

To be eligible, participants must be completing their HSC in this year, have a drivers licence (or be working towards one) and a desire to start their career in a trade.

Summer Skills

This summer many employers will need summer staff to cope with the huge demand of jobs across a variety of industries. Program information will be made available in November 2021.  

A range of industry-aligned short courses will be offered for young and indigenous people wanting to learn new skills, including courses in:

  • Hospitality
  • Construction
  • Community Services
  • Sport & Recreation
  • IT/Digital

How It Works

  1. The IllawarraYES Coordinator consults with local business, government and industry to determine which current, future or ongoing vacancies may be suitable for entry level youth employment.

  2. Liaise with a network of local employment providers to identify and recruit young people to match to employment opportunities.

  3. Partner with Registered Training Organisations (RTO’s) to deliver Smart and Skilled funded vocational training to young people, aligned to specific business and industry training needs.

  4. Coordinate work experience, internships and work trial opportunities, providing young people with hands on experience in the workplace while allowing the employer to trial candidates prior to employment.

  5. Assist with employment options and incentives, including access to youth wage subsidies for casual, part-time or full-time work, and/or referrals to Apprenticeships Australia.


The IllawarraYES program assists local businesses to meet identified skills shortages.  This is achieved by preparing, trialling and potentially employing young people (15-24 years) through the coordination of a range of government funded initiatives.

Youth Participants

The IllawarraYES program assists young people with entry level employment pathways comprising vocational training, employability skills and work experience to prepare them for future employment including apprenticeships and traineeships.

Latest News

Stay up to date – follow us on