Vocational Partnerships Group Inc.

We are a non-profit organisation.

Based in Far North Queensland committed to achieving real and sustainable outcomes for our local community members.



We broker partnerships with businesses and industry to enrich the learning experience of young people.
Our partnerships lead to improved levels of school engagement and employment.


We build the capacity of schools through innovative staffing and program solutions.
Our suite of programs are customised to meet school needs and outcomes.


We improve children’s development and wellbeing by strengthening parenting skills and knowledge, enhancing family functioning and improving community cohesion.


We inspire and connect young people with education, employment and training to ensure active community and economic participation.

We empower youth, strengthen families,
and broker partnerships
between education & industry

Our Work

Employment & Training
Career & Transitions
Indigenous Transitions
Professional Youth Services
Work Experience
Past Programs

Indigenous Transitions

VPG works with local communities to provide a range of support for Indigenous Youth throughout Far North Queensland – both through general and Indigenous-specific programs.

VPG’s Indigenous Training Strategy provides a supported pathway for 60 eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth aged 15 – 24 years who are seeking employment. Young people receive high levels of support to complete vocational qualifications and find a job. Referrals can be made by interested youth/families, schools, non-government and government agencies January – December 2015.

VPG’s Community Learning program provides training and support to eligible young people aged 15 – 24 years to gain nationally recognized skills and transition into further training/employment. High levels of support, assist disadvantaged learners to participate in and complete vocational qualifications. Referrals can be made by interested youth/families, schools, non-government and government agencies February – December 2015.

VPG’s Supported Youth Program assists young people at Malanda & Atherton SHS to overcome personal barriers and be retained in education through individual counseling, support and advocacy.

VPG’s Basic Skill Builder Program assists young people at Trinity Bay SHS to develop fundamental English and Math skills in order to engage more successfully in their secondary education, increase their confidence and fulfill their potential.

VPG is committed to Indigenous Youth Success and works closely with education and industry to broker sustainable pathways for Indigenous Australians.

Professional Youth Services

VPGs multi-disciplinary team is made up of qualified professionals inclusive of Trainers, Social Workers, Youth Mental Health Workers, Positive Parenting Officers, Respectful Relationships Educators, Teachers, Employment Coordinators and Career Advisors.

VPG has been providing staffing expertise to Far North Queensland Secondary Schools throughout the Atherton Tablelands, Cairns, Cassowary Coast, Cooktown, Western Cape and Torres Shire districts since 2005.

VPG is an Accredited Employing Authority (AEC) and currently provides professional staffing solutions to Queensland State Schools through Youth Support Coordinator and Student Behavioural Support funding.

Examples of Professional Staffing Solutions:

Education QLD (Malanda SHS) – As an Independent State School, Malanda SHS engages VPG to provide student support services traditionally undertaken by School Guidance Officers and Youth Support Coordinators. A VPG staff member is based at Malanda SHS 3 days per week working closely with administrative staff supporting young people’s mental health and wellbeing.

Education QLD (Atherton SHS) – VPG is engaged by Atherton State High School to provide professional youth services, supporting young people to successfully transition through the senior phases of learning. A VPG staff member is based at Atherton SHS 2.5 days per week, and plays an active role in the school student support team.

Example of Professional Youth Services

Education QLD (Ravenshoe SS) – As an expert is delivering best-practice respectful relationships and violence prevention education; VPG is engaged by Ravenshoe State School to integrate our RespectMe program into the Year 9 HPE curriculum. In addition to providing students with learning experiences that develop their personal and social capabilities, RespectMe (respectful relationships education program) provides Tier one and Tier two interventions that support the School Wide Positive Behaviour Strategy.

Work Experience

Work experience gives young people a valuable and rewarding insight into their future career path. It affords young people a better understanding of the world of work, and a chance to develop their technical and general employability skills. One week of meaningful and worthwhile work experience can make a lifetime’s difference.

VPG facilitates high quality unpaid work placements for youth, schools, agencies and employers. VPG have been coordinating work placements within Far North Queensland for 17 years, partnering with over 5,000 local employers.

Work Experience Benefits for Students:

  • Road test a career/industry
  • Gain a realistic idea of the positive and negative parts of jobs
  • Obtain current careers information by asking staff questions, such as what they like best about their job, how they ended up in their line of work, and
    what qualifications they have
  • Find out what subjects/courses would be best for you to study
  • Build networks with local employers
  • Develop core work skills and experience that can lead to employment

Work Experience Benefits for Employers:

  • Raise your business profile and promote your industry
  • Strengthen your links with the community
  • Identify young people with potential for your industry
  • Promote the attitudes and skills you desire in your workforce
  • Increase the training and mentoring skills of your staff
  • Help make learning more relevant and meaningful for students

To learn more about work experience opportunities with VPG, contact Emma Takai on 40321677
or info@vpginc.com.au

Past Programs

Youth Skills – Skilling Qld’s for Work Initiative (State Government) 2015 – 2016

The Youth Skills program provided customized training to support young people aged 15 – 19 years who were subject to court orders or bail to gain nationally recognized skills and vocational qualifications. Young people received integrated learner support, job preparation skills and case management.

Community Learning Program (State Government) 2015

VPG’s community learning program provided training and support to young people aged 15 – 24 years with diverse needs to gain nationally recognised skills and transition into further training/employment.

Indigenous Training Strategy (State Government) 2014 – 2015

VPG helped Indigenous young people who were seeking employment by providing high levels of support to complete vocational qualifications and find a job. This program improved employment outcomes for Indigenous young people within the community.

Youth Connections (Australian Government) 2009 – 2014

VPG helped young people most at risk of disengaging, or already disengaged from education, family and/or the community. VPG provided young people with flexible and individualised case management assisting them to remain engaged or re-engage them with education and/or further training, and to improve their ability to make positive life choices.

Partnership Brokers (Australian Government) 2009 – 2014

VPG fostered a strategic, whole of community approach to improving education and transition outcomes for all young people through the creation of partnerships between Industry, Education, Parents & Community Groups.

Respectful Relationships (Australian Government) 2012 – 2014

RespectMe is a primary prevention respectful relationships and intimate partner prevention program. VPG delivered respectful relationships education to young people across Far North Queensland.

Get Set for Work (State Government) 2005 – 2013

VPG supported early school leavers across Cairns, Atherton Tablelands, Western Cape, Cooktown and Thursday Island communities to undertake accredited training and develop work readiness skills transitioning them into further education, training or employment.

Redeploy Reemploy (State Government) 2005 – 2013

VPG transitioned Cairns young people aged 17 – 24 years into employment with accredited training and job searching support.

Community Literacy Program (State Government) 2005 – 2013

VPG helped participants across the Western Cape and Cairns regions to improve workplace literacy and communication skills assisting them to transition into further training or employment.

Youth Support Coordinators (State Government) 2005 – 2013

VPG supported secondary students across the Atherton Tablelands, Cassowary Coast, Western Cape and Torres Shire who were at risk with social, emotional and education related difficulties to remain engaged in education.

Regional Youth Support Coordinators (State Government) 2012 – 2013

VPG provided Education Queensland with a Regional Youth Support Coordinator to build the capacity of Far North QLD schools and facilitate whole of secondary school approaches to youth engagement and transitions.

Connections (Australian Government) 2007 – 2009

VPG supported severely disengaged youth across Far North QLD aged 13-19 to re-engage with learning through personal support and accredited training.

Youth Pathways (Australian Government) 2006 – 2009

VPG supported at risk youth across Far North QLD aged 13-19 to remain engaged in education and transition through school to further education, training, employment or active community life.

Regional Industry Career Advisors (Australian Government) 2006 – 2009

VPG strategically linked education and local businesses, providing up-to-date regional industry developments, local career opportunities and regional skill needs analysis.

Local Community Partnerships (Australian Government) 2006 – 2009

VG helped Far North QLD youth access to quality career information, advice and training as they moved through school and on to further study, training or work by forming partnerships between industry, education, parents and communities.

Increase Vocational Learning Opportunities for Indigenous Students (Australian Government) 2005

VPG assisted Indigenous youth from Cape York Communities of Aurukun, Kowanyama and Cooktown in transitions from school to work, vocational education and training and work experience.

Vocational Education Guidance for Indigenous Students (Australian Government) 2002 – 2005

VPG assisted Indigenous youth from Cairns with transitions from school to work through vocational education and work experience.

Jobs Pathways Program (Australian Government) 2000 – 2005

VPG assisted 300 Cairns young people annually to develop career and transition skills and successfully transition from education to employment.

Community Employment Assistance Program (State Government) 2002 – 2004

VPG worked to address generation unemployment by providing parent of clients training and personal development assisting them to enter the workforce.

Young Indigenous Program (Australian Government) 2000 – 2002

Indigenous Leadership Program providing early intervention support for indigenous youth transitioning into employment.

Enterprise Careers Education Foundation & Australian Student Traineeship Foundation (Australian Government) 1999 – 2005

VPG coordinated and facilitated quality work experience and school based apprenticeship/traineeship placements for secondary schools across the Cairns Region, supporting young people to gain a valuable insight into their future career.

Career & Transitions

VPG career and transition activities provide an opportunity for young people to increase their knowledge of self and the world of work, ensuring they are able to make informed decisions about their future.

VPG works with local secondary schools, community organisations and Job Active providers to deliver a range of career and transition courses for young people requiring assistance to engage in school, training or employment. VPGs flexible approach to delivery means that programs can be adapted to suit the needs of organisations and youth, from1hr courses at schools to 2 week courses at VPG available.

VPG is recognized and certified by the Queensland Studies Authority to deliver our Ready Set Work program for young people aged 15 – 24. This employability skills development course is an opportunity for young people to prepare for the world of work whilst gaining 2 points towards their QLD Certificate of Education.

To discuss contracting VPG for career and transition activities please contact Emma Takai on 0740321677 or info@vpginc.com.au

Examples of Career & Transition Work:

Education QLD (Trinity Bay State High School):
VPG is engaged to deliver the Basic Key Skills Builder program to Trinity Bay SHS Year 10 students who are being held back from engaging successfully in education due to their lack of fundamental English and Math skills. Students attend VPG Cairns 1 day per week to improve their skills, increase their confidence and fulfill their potential.

Catholic Education (St Stephen’s Catholic College):
VPG is engaged to deliver individualized career and transition programs to Year 10 students who are at risk of leaving school early. VPG staff travel to the College to deliver the program 1 afternoon per week during the school term. Students are engaged to explore their future career goals, determine the education and experience required to achieve them and map out pathway for their success.


VPGs Every Family Program aims to improve children’s wellbeing and development. Every Family is unique and comes with their own strengths, skills and challenges. The Every Family program acknowledges these attributes and works with families to recognize and develop their parenting skills, increase their knowledge of child development and create opportunities for resource sharing & support.

Every Family activities may include Triple P Parent coaching, Parent seminars/ workshops; Supported playgroups, Web-based connections and School readiness programs.

Examples of Every Family Activities:

Triple P Parent Coaching provides parents with simple tips to implement positive parenting. Parent coaching does not tell you ‘how to be a parent’, instead it gives you a range of strategies that you can choose from, to help make your family life more enjoyable. Triple P can help you encourage behaviour you like, set rules and routines that everyone respects and follows, and raise happy, confident kids. Triple P is about giving strategies to apply throughout a child’s life. Every
family determines their own goals and works out ways to reach them.

Parenting Workshops are a great way to connect with other parents whilst gaining information about children’s development and wellbeing. Popular workshops include Healthy Eating and Lunchbox Ideas, Hassle Free Shopping, Learning Games, Dealing with Disobedience, Toilet Training and Adolescent Social & Emotional Development. Workshops can be developed to address specific topics/issues and delivered within schools/community.

Get Set 4 Prep is a school readiness program based at Mareeba State Primary School every Friday Morning 9am – 11am. Get Set 4 Prep promotes the development of skills which are optimal for children to possess before commencing school. Get Set 4 Prep familiarizes children with the school environment and school routines.

Junior RespectMe is a school readiness program delivered to Primary School Students in Year 6. Junior RespectMe promotes the development of skills necessary for adolescents to conduct respectful relationships. Junior RespectMe is delivered over 5 sessions within school time.

To find out more visit the Every Family website www.everyfamily.com.au or contact Toni Iacutone on 0428 980 616


RespectMe is a best-practice respectful relationships and violence prevention education program. Informed by the National standards for the primary prevention of sexual assault through education; RespectMe has been delivered within Far North QLD Schools since 2012 with over 200 RespectMe sessions provided to 700 secondary students.

What can schools expect from RespectMe?

The RespectMe student program is targeted at lower secondary students and incorporates a variety of topics pertaining to respectful relationships including:

  • gender stereotypes & media literacy
  • relationship rights and responsibilities
  • intimate partner violence
  • sexual ethics & consent
  • bystander behaviour

How can schools use RespectMe?

RespectMe is designed to give schools flexibility when integrating the activities into their curriculum. Schools may integrate the program into existing learning areas such as HPE or English, in other less curriculum-specific areas, such as Valuing Education or Life Skills programs or through end of term activity days. Schools may choose to purchase the full program delivered weekly over 5 sessions or via a full day format. Alternatively schools may choose
specific stand-alone sessions delivered during a class or ½ days sessions.

The Australian Curriculum

Schools are required to provide learning experiences that develop the personal and social capabilities of their students such as recognising & regulating emotions, developing empathy for others, making responsible decisions and building positive relationships. Explicit in the RespectMe program is the teaching of these required skills and behaviours. RespectMe also has strong curriculum links with Health and Physical Education and includes an
assessment task and resources informed by the current curriculum documents for year nine. There is potential for synergy between RespectMe and other school curriculum which can be developed to meet individual school needs.

How do schools register?

Schools can register their interest at any time by emailing respectme@vpginc.com.au and requesting a consult.

School Testimonial

“With the year levels that have participated in this program over two years, we have experienced a drop in the number of students bullying each other and reporting inappropriate behaviours. Students are taught about their rights and responsibilities in relationships and this supports our whole school values”. H. Carne Atherton State High School.

Information for students

Visit the RespectMe Website www.respectme.org.au to read blogs, faq, polls, quizzes and links.

Employment & Training

VPG’s Transition To Work (TTW) Program supports young people aged 15 – 21 on their journey into employment. The TTW program provides intensive pre-employment support to assist young people to set and achieve their employment and education goals. VPG will assist young people to:

  • Develop practical skills to get employment
  • Connect with education or training,
  • Assist with work experience placements,
  • Find jobs in the local area for young people
  • Connect with relevant community services in the area.

Referrals can be be made by interested youth/families, non-government and government agencies.

VPGs Ready 4 Work program provides job search assistance and employability skills training to eligible young people aged 15 – 24 years who are ready to transition into the workforce. Support can include:

  • Careers advice
  • Resume preparation
  • Interview skills
  • Job search support
  • Employability skills development

Referrals can be made by interested youth/families, schools, non-government and government agencies. Starting October 2015

Ready 4 Work is a QLD Government Skilling QLD’s for Work Initiative

VPGs Get Set 4 Work program provides intensive employment and training assistance to young people aged 15 – 19 years who have left school early or at risk of disengaging from education. Young people receive integrated learner support, careers advice, job preparation skills and case management accompanying nationally recognized training. Referrals can be made by interested youth/families, schools, non-government and government agencies. Starting January 2016

Get Set 4 Work is a QLD Government Skilling QLD’s for Work Initiative

Pre-Employment Programs
– VPG offers fee-for-service pre-employment programs to secondary schools, supporting students to improve their knowledge of self and the world of work. VPGs programs are aimed at assisting young people to re-engage with their education or commence their transition into further training/employment. The QLD Studies Authority accredits VPG’s employability skills program, and young people’s successful participation can earn their 2 points towards the Queensland Certificate of Education.

For information on any of VPG’s Employment & Training programs, please contact Emma Takai on 0740321677 or info@vpginc.com.au

VPG Cairns

Corner of Smith Street and Reserviour Road

The Mareeba Hub – Shop 7/64 Rankin Street, Mareeba

Phone: 4091 6411
Email:  tablelands@vpginc.com.au

185A Edith St, Innisfail QLD 4860
PO Box 1591, Innisfail, QLD, 4860

Phone: 07 4061 7288
Fax: 07 4061 9944
Email: ccoast@vpginc.com.au

5a Comet Avenue, Atherton QLD 4883
PO Box 1064, Atherton QLD 4883

Phone: 07 4091 6411
Fax: 07 4091 6433
Email: tablelands@vpginc.com.au

98 – 102 Anderson Street, Manunda, Cairns, Qld 
PO Box 830N, North Cairns, QLD, 4870

Phone: 07 4032 1677
Fax: 07 4032 1644
Email: info@vpginc.com.au