Our Funding

Our Funding Partners

Our Job Trainer funded courses are for school-leavers, young people and job seekers looking to develop new skills. Undertaking a course with Challenge will give you the skills employers need right now, to help you stage your comeback or get started.

Job Trainer funded courses will help provide skills that Queensland needs for effective recovery from the pandemic. The program targets growth areas, and those have been hit hardest by the pandemic—helping fill existing skills needs or assist in reskilling.

Who is eligible for the program?

To be eligible for Job Trainer, an individual must:

  • Permanently reside in Queensland, and
  • Be an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident (includes humanitarian entrant), temporary resident with the necessary visa and work permits on the pathway to permanent residency, or a New Zealand citizen, and
  • Have finished school, or no longer be at school (including home schooled), and
  • Not already be enrolled in training (includes VET and higher education courses), and
  • Not have previously completed a qualification funded under the Job Trainer fund, and
  • i.Either be a jobseeker or a school leaver or young person Job seeker means an individual aged 15 years or older who is out of work; or
  • in receipt of income support payments.
  • ii.School leaver or young person means an individual who is aged 17 to 24 years, regardless of employment status.

What is Job Trainer?

Job Trainer is an initiative of the Australian Government and is part of the government’s economic response to COVID-19. There are two main components of Job Trainer: 1) subsided training (which you will find on this page) 2) an apprenticeship and traineeship wage subsidy. The Australian Government has partnered with the Queensland Government to deliver the Job Trainer subsidised training initiative in Queensland. Challenge will provide training to eligible Queenslanders, supporting them to gain new skills to help Queensland recover.

How does Job Trainer work?

Job Trainer is about supporting Queenslanders who find themselves unemployed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Job Trainer funding for training is administered by the Queensland Government directly to Challenge Employment & Training. Challenge will apply this funding to the below mentioned courses on this page. If you meet the eligibility criteria and you enrol in one of the approved courses, your course will either be provided to you at no cost, or at a low cost.

How much will Job Trainer cost?

Courses supported by Job Trainer will either be offered to you fee-free or at a low cost—considerably lower than usual.

What if I’m not eligible for Job Trainer courses?

There are a range of programs that have been subsidised by the Queensland Government. If you are not eligible for the Job Trainer courses you may be eligible for one of these.

What does ‘free’ mean?

‘Free’ means there are no tuition fees for the course—this is because the Job Trainer Fund is providing a subsidy to Challenge Employment & Training on behalf of Queenslanders. It means you receive high quality training from industry experienced and award winning teachers at no cost. You may have to pay for resources and uniforms.

How many times can I use Job Trainer?

You can use Job Trainer once for a full qualification. You may be able to access the funding for multiple short courses.

If I use Job Trainer, can I access government funding for higher level qualifications later?

If you are eligible to use Job Trainer and choose to use it now, you may be eligible to use other government funding to subsidise the cost of training if you decide to another qualification at a higher level.


Skilling Queenslanders for Work represents a commitment to increasing workforce participation, driving job growth and strengthening the performance of the Queensland economy by improving work opportunities for disadvantaged Queenslanders.

Who can participate in a Skilling Queenslanders for Work (SQW) project?

  • Anyone ineligible for Australian Government employment services or assistance
  • Anyone who requires supplementary services because they have barriers to learning and employment

Who is eligible for the program?

Participants must be:

  • Queensland resident
  • Aged 15 years or older even if you already have a Certificate III or higher qualification. Other criteria also apply
  • An Australian citizen, permanent resident (includes humanitarian entrant), temporary resident with the necessary visa and work permits on a pathway to permanent residency or a New Zealand citizen.

What will it cost me to participate?

Course fees associated with your training are subsidised by the Queensland Government, leaving only a small student contribution enrolment fee. This contribution fee is paid for by the Community Based Organisation partnered with the program.

This training is proudly funded and supported by the Queensland Government through its Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative.

Program Types

Community Work Skills

Community Work Skills assists disadvantaged Queensland job seekers and low skilled workers to gain nationally recognised skills and qualifications up to a certificate III level.

Work Skills Traineeships

Work Skills Traineeships enable long-term unemployed and disadvantaged job seekers to be employed for up to six months on community, construction or environmental projects.

The User Choice program provides a public funding contribution towards the cost of training and assessment for eligible Queensland apprentices and trainees.

The program provides the flexibility for apprentices, trainees and their employers to select a preferred registered training organisation (RTO) from a list of pre-qualified suppliers (PQS) for the delivery of accredited training to meet their specific needs.

How do I participate?

Choose a qualification that interests you and become an apprentice or trainee.

Do you need to contribute to the cost of training?

Not all apprenticeships and traineeships attract government funding. The funding priority will determine the level of public funds contributed to training regardless of whether the qualification is an apprenticeship or traineeship.

Can I start an apprenticeship or traineeship if I am still at school?

Yes you can. School-based apprenticeships and traineeships (SATs) are available in many occupations in Queensland. Students should be in either year 10, 11 or 12, but may be able to enter a SAT prior to starting year 10 in exceptional circumstances. In these circumstances, a business case must be submitted to the Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training and approved prior to commencing the SAT.

The SAT is undertaken as part of the high school studies. A SAT employment and/or training arrangement must impact on the school timetable for the program to be considered school-based. Apprenticeships or traineeships which do not have an impact on the student’s school timetable are not considered a SAT.

All SATs must be supported by the employer, the school, a supervising registered training organisation (SRTO) referred to as the training organisation, and the parent or guardian. SATs are paid for the time spent working with their employer.

SATs receive funding for their training aligned to the priority level of the qualification.

SATs are exempt from paying student fees under the User Choice program while they are still at school.

Parties to the training contract for a SAT should be aware that there are a number of conditions that apply to the training contract, including the amount of training that a SAT can do while they are still attending school. There are also conditions related to the transition of a SAT into full-time or part-time apprenticeship/traineeship arrangements once school has been completed.

Visit the Apprenticeships Info website for more information on school-based apprenticeships and traineeships.

Am I eligible for a funded place in the User Choice program?

To be eligible for a government contribution towards the costs of training, an apprentice or trainee must have entered into a training contract for a qualification that is funded by the Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training and be registered in the Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training’s registration system DELTA. The contract commencement date or recommencement date must be on or after 1 July 2010, and the training provider selected to deliver the training must hold a pre-qualified supplier status for the nominated qualification.

The government contribution for a User Choice funding contribution is detailed in the apprentice or trainee’s letter of registration from the Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training, and is subject to student eligibility and their selection of an eligible PQS as their SRTO.

Are there any rules that I should be aware of in relation to funding?

Apprentices and trainees can only receive one government contribution for a User Choice funded qualification at any single point in time, i.e. a student is not funded to undertake two apprenticeships or traineeships at the same time.

In addition, apprentices and trainees, including SATs, can only receive a maximum of two government funding contributions under the current User Choice Program.

There are other rules specifically related to funding for SATs, so students and their parents/guardians should discuss their intentions with their school’s vocational education and training coordinator prior to signing up as a SAT. Australian Apprenticeship Support Network providers are another good source of information.

Will I be expected to pay fees and charges to my RTO?

Usually students are required to pay a co-contribution fee. In some cases though, an RTO may provide either a partial or full exemption for a student in respect to the co-contribution fee. SATs are not required to pay a co-contribution fee while they are still at school, but may (visit the Fee-free training for Year 12 graduates information) be required to pay fees once their training contract has been converted to full-time or part-time post school. Your SRTO will provide in detail its fees and charges policy, including full costs method of collection, refunds and exemptions prior to enrolment.

The Back to Work Youth team is providing a unique opportunity for youth aged between 15 and 24 years to access additional funds for short courses and support services for eligible youth applicants. Link and Launch is a free service designed to help you identify the options that can work for you after school. You’ll be guided through a range of post-school study, training and work options – and if you don’t have any idea what you want to do next, the program can help you with that too.

Participants who register with the program are assessed as to which support is best suited to meet their needs.

Who is eligible for the program?

• Participants aged 15-24 years
• Permanently reside in Queensland
• Are an Australian citizen, or a New Zealand citizen, or hold an eligible visa as identified by the department
• Meet any additional eligibility requirements identified throughout this initiative
• Are not currently at school
• Are not employees of the supplier

Transition to Work is a service to support young people aged 15-24 on their journey to employment (including apprenticeships and training) or education.

Transition to Work participants receive intensive, pre-employment support to develop practical skills to get a job, connect with education or training, find local job opportunities and connect with relevant local community services.

The Transition to Work service has a strong focus on practical intervention and work experience to build a young person’s skills, confidence and readiness to engage in employment. Participant Factsheet

At Challenge we can help build your skills and confidence to continue your education or get you ready to start a new job. We will help you to:
• Develop practical skills.
• get education or training.
• Find and finish work experience placements to give you recent employment experience.
• Connect you with local job opportunities.
• Connect with relevant local community services.

Who is eligible for the program?

The Transition to Work Service targets three groups of young people who are considered at risk of long-term unemployment. The eligibility requirements for each of the three groups vary.

The overarching eligibility requirements to participate in Transition to Work are:
• aged 15-24 years on Commencement in the Service, and
• an Australian citizen, or
• the holder of a permanent visa, or
• New Zealand Special Category Visa holders (a protected Special Category Visa holder; or non-protected Special Category Visa holder), or
• nominated Visa Holders (including Temporary Protection Visa Holders and Safe Haven Visa Holders).
It will also depend on whether you:
• Have a Year 12 certificate or Certificate III.
• Have been employed within the last six months..
• Are receiving an income support payment such as Youth Allowance.
• Are participating in another employment service including jobactive.

What return to face-to-face service delivery means for you.

The Certificate 3 Guarantee supports eligible individuals to complete first post-school certificate III qualification and increase their skills to move into employment, re-enter the workforce or advance their career. It also supports school students to access training and Queensland’s Year 12 graduates to transition to employment by providing fee-free training in high priority qualifications.

Certificate 3 Guarantee Student Factsheet
Disadvantaged learner Fact Sheet (PDF)

Are you eligible?

Funded training is available for individuals who are:

  • Queensland residents aged 15 years or over
  • No longer at school (with the exception of VET in Schools students)
  • Australian or New Zealand citizens or Australian permanent residents (including humanitarian entrants), or a temporary resident with the necessary visa and on the pathway to permanent residency
  • Not holding, and not enrolled in, a Certificate III level or higher qualification (not including qualifications completed at school and foundation skills training)

To be eligible to receive the Certificate 3 Guarantee, students must not already hold, or be currently studying a Certificate III or higher-level qualification. This includes any equivalent Certificate III or higher-level training completed at university or through an apprenticeship or traineeship. It does not matter if you paid for this training or if it was subsidised by the government.

However, Certificate III qualifications completed while at school and foundation skills courses are not counted and you will still be eligible for the Certificate 3 Guarantee.

What will you gain from the program?

Students have access to government subsidised training for one completed Certificate III qualification.

What will it cost me to participate?

Course fees associated with your training are subsidised by the Queensland Government, leaving only a small student contribution enrolment fee.

Eligible applicants are required to contribute to the costs of their training through a co-contribution fee. The fee may be paid on your behalf by an employer or another third party and is charged at the time of enrolment. There is a requirement to complete a student employment survey within three months of completing or discontinuing the qualification.