Member for Dandenong, Gabrielle Williams, has today congratulated Michelle Hood and Dandenong Neighbourhood House (DNH) who has been named a finalist at this year’s Victorian Learn Local Awards.

The awards recognise the contribution of the more than 300 Learn Local organisations and the staff who work tirelessly to help others.

Michelle Hood has been nominated for the Ro Allen Award – Recognising Pre-accredited Learner Excellence, for her contribution as part of the Mums ‘n’ Bubs program at Dandenong Neighbourhood House.

The program is a visual arts pre-accredited program that involved a group of people on Community Service Orders at DNH making quilts. Since 2015, Mum ‘n’ Bubs members have made around 140 quilts.

Michelle began her work as a volunteer and now has a position at DNH teaching cooking skills to seniors with a disability.

DNH has also been recognised for its programs, receiving two award nominations in the ‘Excellence in Creating Local Solutions’ and ‘Learn Local Volunteer Champion’ categories.

This year, two acknowledgement categories, the Learn Local Legend and Learn Local Volunteer Champion, will be awarded in addition to the five traditional awards categories:

• Pre-accredited Learners
• Outstanding Practitioner
• Outstanding Pathways Program
• Excellence in Creating Local Solutions
• AMES Australia Diversity Innovation.

In total there is $66,000 to be won across the seven categories, with the winners announced at this year’s Learn Local Awards to be held on Thursday, 31 August.
Ms Williams said the Andrews Labor Government is building a strong training system – ensuring all Victorians – regardless of age, postcode or background have access to high quality training.
Learn Locals have also benefited from the Government’s $20 million Reconnect Program, which provides wrap around support to help Victoria’s most disadvantaged learners into training.