More jobs, skills opportunities in social service and early childhood sectors: Masagos

Children wearing protective face masks sanitise their hands as they attend preschool classes at St James' Church Kindergarten as schools reopen amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Singapore June 2, 2020.  REUTERS/Edgar Su
Children wearing protective face masks sanitise their hands as they attend preschool classes at St James' Church Kindergarten as schools reopen amid the coronavirus disease outbreak in Singapore on 2 June, 2020. (Reuters file photo)

SINGAPORE — Some 4,500 jobs and skills opportunities will be available across the social service and early childhood sectors, and for persons with disabilities by the end of this year, said Minister for Social and Family Development Masagos Zulkifli on Friday (5 March) in Parliament during the ministry's Committee of Supply debate.

Together with the National Council of Social Service (NCSS), the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) is developing 1,200 job and skills opportunities in the social service sector.

These span roles in corporate and professional functions, for both fresh graduates and those in mid-career. The jobs allow social service agencies to obtain manpower that can help them transform and adapt their services in the new COVID-19 normal.

To support the SGUnited Jobs and Skills efforts, the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) has been working with preschools and social service agencies since July last year to create close to 1,000 additional job opportunities in the early childhood sector.

These include short-term jobs for Singaporeans and permanent residents to join preschools as Safe Management Assistants to assist with the implementation of SMM in preschools, as well as longer-term jobs for mid-career job seekers to be trained as certified early childhood educators via the Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) or Place-and-Train (PnT) Programme for Early Childhood Care and Education.

The MSF is also working towards providing 1,100 opportunities within the ministry, the NCSS, and the ECDA, as part of the Public Service division’s push in 2020 to create 15,000 jobs in the public sector.

These include social service traineeships for recent graduates and mid-career job seekers to equip them with skills and boost employability, as well as SGUnited jobs to augment front-line manpower to support direct COVID-19 needs.

The job vacancies and opportunities will be made available progressively through to the end of the year, on MyCareersFuture, Social Service Tribe, Shape Our Tomorrow and Careers@Gov.

Separately, the MSF announced on 29 January the creation of new job and training programmes for persons with disabilities, as part of the workstream under the National Jobs Council.

The three new types of programmes are administered by SG Enable, and will complement existing efforts under the Open Door Programme (ODP).

The MSF and SG Enable aim to create 1,200 employment, traineeships and skills upgrading opportunities for persons with disabilities through its new and existing programmes.

The three new programmes will support 150 opportunities for a start. They are Place-and-Train (PnT) programmes, where persons with disabilities will be placed with employers and trained for new full-time or contract roles; Attach-and-Train (AnT) programmes, where persons with disabilities will receive on-the-job and structured training by host companies, in temporary attachments and/or traineeships; and Skills Development Programmes (SDP), where persons with disabilities can attend customised training courses to upskill themselves.

Persons with disabilities who participate in any of these programmes will benefit from a 90 per cent course fee subsidy for courses that they attend. The programmes will provide between six and 12 months of support, depending on the length of individual programmes.

Partners who are interested to provide opportunities to persons with disabilities, and persons with disabilities who are interested in the various opportunities, are invited to find out more at the SG Enable website and register their interest with SG Enable.

"Together, these (measures) will put us in good position to actively build resilience in our people and enable them to bounce back from the (COVID-19) crisis even stronger," said Masagos.

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