Help For Women To Return To Work

08 Apr 2013


Immigration News

Women who have put their careers on hold for their families can expect more job opportunities with flexi-work arrangements and better work-life balance.

This is thanks to a recently- launched $170-million WorkPro programme developed by the Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) and the Ministry of Manpower.

The three-year programme was first announced during the Committee of Supply Debate on the Budget last month and launched on April 1.

So far, 14 employers have come on board, to tap on grants to redesign jobs, and incentives to recruit and retain Singapore workers.

Besides attracting women back to the workplace, WorkPro is targeted at mature workers and the economically inactive.

"WorkPro will help employers create more progressive and work-life-friendly workplaces," said Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin yesterday in his speech at a job fair and carnival held at HDB Hub in Toa Payoh.

"This will make it easier for working women to strike a balance between work and family, as well as create more flexible jobs for women who want to return to work," Mr Tan added.

Through the programme, those who have not worked for some time can attend fully-funded job-preparation workshops and be matched to jobs offered by employers on the WorkPro programme.

Small and medium-sized enterprises are expected to be the biggest beneficiaries of WorkPro, with about 70 per cent expected to tap on it.

One such company is Cerebral, a child enrichment centre at Waterloo Centre with about 60 staff, of which 60 per cent comprise part-timers.

Chief operating officer and executive principal Jean Chan told My Paper that there is a scarce pool of teachers who specialise in the performance and creative arts.

"(With WorkPro), we are able to give them more flexible working hours, so they can take care of their families and children...and we can leverage on their expertise which wouldn't be wasted," said Ms Chan.

To spread the word about WorkPro, 12 ambassadors - made up of working women - have been appointed to reach out to unemployed residents to encourage them to return to work.

The ambassador initiative will be piloted in the South West District. WDA and the People's Association hope to appoint 100 ambassadors by the middle of next year.

Source: http://www.asiaone.com/News/Latest%2BNews/Singapore/Story/A1Story20130408-414218.html


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