Youth Employment Scheme (YES)

The Youth Employment Scheme (YES) offers young people aged 15 to 24 an opportunity to work in the Victorian Public Service (VPS) or an agency of government for 12 months while studying for a Certificate III or IV qualification.

Program aims

The aims of YES are to:

  • increase the participation of people in their communities and in the workforce
  • assist young people to gain paid work experience, training and qualifications that lead to sustainable employment
  • assist communities to meet future skill and employment needs.

Information for participants

In order to be eligible for YES, participants must be:

  • aged between 15–24 years at the commencement of the traineeship
  • unemployed or not working more than 15 hours per week (young people do not have to be registered with a jobactive provider or be in receipt of assistance from Centrelink)
  • not currently undertaking tertiary education
  • not attained a post-school qualification (excluding certificate level 1-4 courses).

The program has a focus on addressing disadvantage with priority given to young people who:

  • have left school without completing Year 12, or in the case of Australian School Based Traineeships, are at risk of leaving school early
  • are from culturally diverse backgrounds
  • are Aboriginal
  • are at risk of homelessness
  • are young offenders
  • have a disability
  • live in social housing.

Traineeships are particularly significant for young women. Women are 40 per cent more likely than men to undertake a traineeship (while young men are nearly nine times more likely to be apprentices than young women). The value of this entry into a career was reinforced by several trainees interviewed about the program:

  • "Where I'm from there were no careers for girls, just working in shops"
  • "My family are proud I have this job, none of them have ever had one like this"
  • "I've had heaps of jobs but none of them were a career"
  • "I'm a single parent, this job means I can support my family now and into the future. I now feel really optimistic about me and my children's future."
  • "Without this I would have stayed in the pub, no prospects of anything"

Page last updated: 20 August 2016