Carina Leagues Club has today launched its inaugural $10,000 education bursary, in a bid to provide more opportunities for its staff and people pursuing a career in hospitality.
The bursary will be open to Carina Leagues Club employees, with applications assessed by a leadership panel and the funds distributed among up to four employees each year.
The program is the latest in a series of training and development initiatives the club has implemented to stay ahead of tough employment market conditions and attract and retain more people within the industry.
Community clubs are increasing investment in training and development programs for hospitality workers as competition for talent and skills shortages continue to impact Queensland businesses.
Carina Leagues Club General Manager Adam Wiencke said the club has a proud history of supporting staff with career pathway development and industry apprenticeships for youth, and was one of the first clubs in Queensland to have its own full-time Culture Manager to support workplace wellbeing.
“Innovation is at the heart of the club’s approach to everything, including recruitment and retention. We’re always focused on new ways to offer staff more flexibility, stability and growth opportunities,” explained Wiencke.
“Our community donation programs have also played a role in attracting particularly younger people who want to work for an organisation that gives back. Every visit to acommunity club has an impact, and that gives the work we do such a strong sense of meaning and purpose.”
The 2023 Jobs and Skills Report, released this month by the new Jobs and Skills Australia agency, showed accommodation and hospitality managers and waiters were some of the most in-demand roles facing labour and skill shortages, with chefs among the top 20 most in-demand jobs in Queensland.
“We’re not immune to the struggles many industries have had in recovering from Covid and adapting to economic pressures, but our commitment to giving back to our community gives us a point of difference compared to many other hospitality employers,” stated Wiencke.
“We want to build community clubs up as a long-term employment and career option for ambitious and values-driven people, rather than a stop-gap or short-term option. To do that requires a commitment to quality and accessible training, education and development.”
Carina Leagues Club has no shortage of long-term employees, with marketing manager Tayla Neilen approaching almost a decade of service, after originally joining the club as a kids club attendant. Earlier in the year, Neilen was named Young Manager of the Year at the 2023 Clubs Queensland Awards for Excellence.
“I started my journey with Carina as a Christmas worker and so it’s surreal that I’m now the Marketing Manager at the Club,” states Neilen.
“At the time I just wanted to make some extra money over the holidays, but since then Carina has helped me shape my career over the long term. I love the commitment to people and progress – it’s made me realise there’s more to a community club than what you might think when you first walk through the door.”
“The leadership team has been so supportive of my career, including sponsoring me to complete a Bachelor of Business as part of its Degree for Free program in 2018.
That kind of investment into my career has just been invaluable and it’s really exciting that more people at the club will get to experience that.”
Carina Leagues Club has offered multiple training and development opportunities in the last five years, including sponsoring TAFE courses; one leadership course through Club Training Australia; four Gaming Development Management Courses through Leagues Club Australia; and 14 members of the management team completed a Leadership Development Course through DNS Specialist Services.
On top of this, all baristas are trained at an off-site facility; all Playland (kids club) staff and managers receive annual paid first aid and CPR courses; and eight staff members have completed a Mental Health First Aid course.