Seventy Far North Queenslanders will receive literacy and numeracy training thanks to Queensland Government funding.

A $130,000 grant will also up-skill 30 volunteer tutors to support literacy and numeracy learners in Far North Queensland.

Member for Mulgrave Curtis Pitt said the Community Literacy Program will be rolled out in various locations.

“Choice Training will run the Far North Queensland Volunteer Tutors project to help re-engage marginalised learners in areas including Babinda, Innisfail, Kuranda, Tully, Mossman and Cairns,” Mr Pitt said.

“A lack of literacy and numeracy is a major factor in restricting lifestyle and employment choices which impacts on many lives.

“This project will have a positive impact on local people and communities.”

Far North Queensland Volunteer Tutors Project Coordinator Melinda Stockwell said the project will help to re-engage marginalised learners.

“The 10 intakes of 10 participants will be rolled out this year with the first group launched at Babinda,” Ms Stockwell said.

“This is an individualised program where participants will be interviewed and assessed to identify their learning needs and goals. The program will then address these needs through learning programs which will include computer literacy.

“Indigenous people will make up around 30 percent of the mix. We aim to engage participants in further study once they finish and continue on to further education and training so they are on their way to getting a qualification.

“There is no minimum skill requirement for the program. Everyone is welcome.”

The Community Literacy program is part of the State Government’s Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative.

During 2010/11 the Queensland Government will invest $106 million in the Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative to give an estimated 24,000 long-term unemployed and underemployed people job related assistance and skills training to maximise labour force participation and increase Queensland’s prosperity.

Twelve months after receiving assistance 66 per cent of participants are in employment or further training.

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