Farm workers leave

National, Normal

The National, Monday February 10th, 2014

 THREE batches of seasonal workers left the country this month for farms in Australia and New Zealand.

Since 2011, people from rural parts of the country have been travelling overseas to work on farms as part of the PNG Seasonal Workers Programme.

The programme is facilitated by the departments of labour and foreign affairs. 

They held a predeparture training programme before they left.

Programme coordinator, Toby Tori said the training helped prepare the workers because most were from rural areas.

“We engage stakeholders such as Westpac to educate the workers on financial literacy and budgeting, as they will open savings accounts with the bank locally and in Australia,” he said.

“There is a personal viability course that makes the recruits more open-minded about what they are doing and goals they should set.

“It opens up their minds and allows them to link ideas and see a bigger picture.”

Team leader of the second batch heading to New Zealand on Friday Philip Tep said his group would do their best.

“We are comfortable because we are accompanied by a number of returning workers so they will guide us,” he said.

PNG workers have proved to be satisfactory employees in Australian and New Zealand companies which resulted in the request for more. 

The Government started the programme to provide opportunities for locals, promote gender equality, eradicate poverty.