Earlier this year, a group of students from Mission Australia’s social enterprise, Synergy Auto Repairs, were invited to attend an Apprenticeship Day at Axalta’s Training Centre in Victoria. The students were able to gain insights into the refinish industry as well as processes and techniques required to complete different refinish tasks. The Apprenticeship Day provided the students with an opportunity to have hands-on experience, aiming to keep them engaged and motivated to pursue a career in the refinish industry.
Synergy Auto Repairs not only provides high quality smash repair services, but also operates as a social enterprise run by Mission Australia, supported by the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council, Suncorp and Kangan Institute. Synergy Auto Repairs offers a training and work experience program for young people who are disengaged or are experiencing disadvantage. Since it opened in 2014, Synergy has worked with 105 young people and has repaired more than 3,000 vehicles.
The 6-month placement at Synergy Auto Repairs provides students with a Certificate II qualification and a pathway into a four-year apprenticeship, where they are assisted with a workplace placement through Suncorp Insurance.
During their time at Axalta’s training centre, each of the four participants were able to learn more about waterborne paint application, mask and design work, clearcoat application and using various refinishing techniques, all participants painted a panel with the Axalta “A” which they were able to take home at the end of the session.
Nicole Stephenson, Student Support Officer at Mission Australia says she’s grateful for the relationship with Axalta. “Opening the training centre to us, gives our students a real sense of self-worth as they can see people going above and beyond for them,” says Stephenson.
Of the Apprenticeship Day, Stuart Aisbett, Training Consultant at Axalta, stated “It’s always good to see motivated young people coming into the trade. As a trainer it’s a pleasure to be able to provide session like this to pass on knowledge and to inspire those new to the trade, to pursue a career in the industry.”
For more information on Mission Australia’s social enterprise Synergy Auto Repairs visit www.missionaustralia.com.au/synergy