Settlement Services International (SSI) Group’s Wivenhoe Local Jobs Program employment facilitator, John Perry OAM, was awarded the National Employment Services Association (NESA) Lifetime Achievement Award earlier this month for his long-term involvement in employment initiatives and social enterprises around Australia.
Mr Perry spent 28 years in the Commonwealth public service, including 13 years in senior management in the Federal Department of Employment, Education and Training.
Mr Perry’s passion for helping people into employment began early in his career, believing that work, for most people, is the primary path to economic independence, social inclusion and wellbeing.
“I am honoured to have been recognised for this award. It is humbling and I’m happy to be able to play my part in supporting the community,” Mr Perry said.
In recent years Mr Perry has dedicated his time to helping young unemployed people living in areas of high disadvantage to develop the skills required to successfully enter the workforce.
He has worked closely with SSI Group subsidiary, Access, to assist in social enterprise and employment growth, namely the Local Jobs Program.
Access CEO, Ms Gail Ker OAM congratulated Mr Perry on his award.
“It is well-deserved recognition for John. I am exceptionally grateful to have someone of John’s calibre working with Access on the Local Jobs Program,” Ms Ker said.
“John has dedicated most of his life to finding employment opportunities and solutions for disadvantaged people and communities.
“To have him representing SSI in Wivenhoe, and helping the region recover from the coronavirus pandemic, is a great honour.”
The Local Jobs Program is funded by the Australian Government Department of Education, Skills and Employment and is the first of its kind, designed in response to the impact COVID-19 has had on the economy.
Through the Local Jobs Program, employment facilitators work with employers and other key local stakeholders to develop employment solutions at a local level and support Australians back into work