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Inaugural Executive Director of Y Careers announced

January 25, 2023 Y Careers

Y Australia is delighted to announce the appointment of Amaresh Devanesen as the Inaugural Executive Director of its innovative new Y Careers Agency.

Amaresh steps into leading the Y Australia’s bold new social enterprise, Y Careers, which will focus on creating new career pathways and meaningful employment opportunities for young people in the rapidly changing care economy and other growth sectors.

“Amaresh’s passion for working with young people, his deep expertise in training and business development; his authentic, inclusive and highly collaborative leadership style, and his proactive, entrepreneurial mindset is the unique combination of capabilities we were looking for in our Inaugural Executive Director of Y Careers. We are thrilled to have Amaresh on board”, said Y Australia Group CEO, Tal Karp.

Amaresh joins Y Careers from AFL SportsReady with a strong operational and commercial background across the vocational education, for purpose, employment and hospitality sectors. As part of the SportsReady team he led the generation of hundreds of traineeships for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people whilst identifying and creating new business development opportunities, including sponsorship agreements and new funding sources.

Demonstrating his passion for entrepreneurship and enabling young people, Amaresh also serves on the Board for Black Duck Group, a First Nations start-up and incubator of young indigenous entrepreneurs.

“With backing and seed funding from the Y Australia, Paul Ramsay and Macquarie Group Foundations, along with an election commitment to fund the establishment of Y Careers by the Albanese Government, I am very excited to lead this important Australian-first initiative”, said Y Careers’ new Executive Director, Amaresh Devanesen. 

“I’m personally inspired by the Y Careers Vision of enabling young people and building a pipeline of care workers; and enter this role with particular passion in ensuring the inclusion of diverse young people. With new technologies, multiple pathways for learning and ample space for innovation, the future work opportunities for young people in the care economy have never been so attractive.”

As one of the largest employers of young people across the country, Y Australia is well placed to lead on an enterprise with a new approach to building a care workforce fit for the future.

Driving meaningful work opportunities is a key strategic pillar for Y Australia in the years ahead, as it delivers on its new Vision, of creating a better world, with and for young people.

“Y Careers is a pro-active intervention to ensure meaningful work for young people in contributing to the care and support of children, their parents, seniors, and those with additional needs, in the decades ahead,” said Y Careers Chair, Andrew Smith.

“Designed with a consortium of experienced tech, learning, job matching and employer partners, the Y Careers model is already breaking new ground. We are delighted to welcome Amaresh Devanesen into this critical new leadership role, as the Executive Director of our new enterprise,” he added.

Amaresh will start his new role in early February.

Many thanks to our intergenerational selection panel of Andrew Smith, Chris Lewis, Jan Owen AM, Kergen Angel, and our recruitment partner, Annie Healy of SHK.

About Y Careers

Australia is currently facing a national shortage of workers in the care sector across child-care, disability care and aged care.

Workforce estimates suggest the Australian care sector will need 1 million additional workers over the next 10 years.

At the same time, youth unemployment remains more than double the average, with the disproportionate participation of young people in the ‘gig economy’ also contributing to higher ongoing levels of underemployment.

Without innovative solutions and direct, tailored action to create a new and ongoing stream of workers, this shortage will result in the closures of critical services that our communities and the Australian economy desperately need. The need is particularly acute in regional areas.

Established as a Charity in 2022, Y Careers will help to address this situation by creating a pipeline of next generation workers for employers in the care industry, through a program that provides young people with:

  • A two-year traineeship;
  • The support and coaching of a Career Agent; and
  • A choice of placements in a variety of care sector roles and organisations (while having the stability of one employer – Y Careers).

Through $15.2 million of establishment funding committed by the Federal Government for FY23), Y Careers will build a much-needed pipeline of 15,000 young workers over the next 5 years, across child-care, disability care and aged care sectors. See more, here.

About the Y 

The Y in Australia (formerly the ‘YMCA’) is a social enterprise, operating in more than 680 communities, with 11,500+ employees and over 16 million visits to our programs and facilities in the past year.

Drawing from our vast national footprint and 170+ years of deep connections with our local communities, Y Australia is focused on helping to resolve system-wide challenges in support of young people and our communities.

At the Y, we pride ourselves on our local expertise, our national scale, but also, our global reach. Our world YMCA movement is the largest youth movement in the world, reaching 65 million people in over 120 countries, in every continent.

Across our federated setting, the Y provides a broad range of services that support children and young people across the course of their lives – from childcare, outside school care and youth development programs, to disability services, access schools, meaningful career pathways and community recreation services. We also offer a wide range of programs for marginalised, disadvantaged and at risk, young people. See further:

Contact: Jayden Parsons, Y Careers Project Manager on 0434 701 702.

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