Wednesday 9 December 2020
By Ginninderry Project Team

Ginninderry’s SPARK Training and Employment Initiative has had a positive impact on the lives of hundreds of people who have graduated from one of our programs. In this series, we meet previous graduates and see what they’re up to now! This week we catch up with Michael Bowman.

Michael attended our SPARK Conservation Land Management & Horticulture Introduction program in 2019. This program commenced on Monday 29th of July, for 17 weeks at CIT Bruce and Ginninderry. Michael had outstanding attendance throughout the program and graduated with seven accredited units of competency from the Conservation Land Management and Horticulture qualification, and SPARK provided him with his White Card and Asbestos Awareness Card.

Before the SPARK Horticulture program, Michael moved from Thailand to Australia. Prior to him starting the program Michael was unemployed and seeking for work. He found out about SPARK from one of his neighbours, and his Aunty saw the program flyer in the Canberra Weekly. Michael then wanted to attend the information session to get into the program.

Throughout the program Michael was able to learn a lot in both theory and practical hands on work. He was able to learn new skills and make new friends while being on the program. SPARK was able to assist Michael with getting his driver’s licence, and support Michael in getting a job that he would enjoy.

After completing the SPARK Horticulture program, SPARK introduced Michael to an employer and helped provide a reference for him, which supported Michael to secure employment.  Due to COVID with no face to face support, SPARK was able to keep in touch during this period which was able to keep the participants engaged.

Michael currently has a full-time job in the industry that he wanted and studied for, which he now enjoys what he is doing. Michael said that he works with some amazing people and continues to learn every day.

Would you recommend SPARK to others? “Yes, it has really helped me, and everyone was friendly, supportive and professional. Thank you, so much.”