Feature

Teen desperately wants job but is frustrated by rejections

Unemployed Renae Lucht is sick of sitting at home all day, unable to find a job.
Unemployed Renae Lucht is sick of sitting at home all day, unable to find a job. Eliza Wheeler

NIKENBAH'S Renea Lucht, 19, is frustrated by her unemployment status.

Despite applying for jobs on average once a week since the age of 16, Ms Lucht said she had never been able to get a job.

"When I started looking for employment in high school, no one would look at me because I was only available after school," Ms Lucht said.

"After I finished school I couldn't get past the interview stage because I had no experience aside from a certificate three in business, which mustn't count for anything, so I've never really had a job."

Ms Lucht said being unemployed affected her life in many different ways.

"I can't afford my license or a car so I'm stuck at home until I can get a job," she said.

"Being unemployed affects your social life because you can't go anywhere and you can't afford much either."

She said her unemployment was affecting her self-confidence.

"You leave school thinking you've made it and you'll get a job but now I'm asking myself 'am I good enough?'" she said.

Ms Lucht said she had desperately been trying to find employment, but was getting sick of being rejected.

"I've applied to every local retail shop in the area you could think of," she said.

"But I haven't applied for fast food places because I'm a very anxious person and I know I couldn't handle it."

Mat Burgess, 20, works for Actrol Parts in Pialba as a storeman and said while there was a lot of unemployment in the area, young people needed to change their attitude if they want to get jobs.

"I'm not disagreeing that unemployment is not high here because that's a fact," Mr Burgess said.

"I just think that people aren't willing to lower their expectations to find work - I always thought it didn't really matter what I did as long as it's working, because you can always get a job you don't like and then work at it until you find one you like."

Mr Burgess said he has worked as a paper boy, at a fish & chip shop, Woolworths, as a concreter and now as a storeman for Actrol and said it has not always been easy to find work.

"It's not easy to find full-time work but it's not meant to be easy - people work so hard to get there," he said.

"This attitude of 'I'm entitled because of my qualifications' is not good enough, yes qualifications are sometimes legally needed for some jobs, but it doesn't make you entitled to anything."

He said the Fraser Coast Regional Council and businesses need to work towards giving people opportunities in the area.

"A lot of programs are set up in the Fraser Coast but they aren't going to improve the job opportunities here," he said.

"They actually seem to prepare people to go elsewhere and work in other towns and places, which is probably not going to help here."

Ms Lucht said it wasn't just young people who were struggling to find work in the area either, and shops should re-adjust their attitude when it came to employing new people.

"It's hard for the older people to get work so you can't just say 'give the jobs to the young people!'" she said.

"I think shops should give people a chance even if they are without experience because there's a whole community to think about too."  

Topics:  editors picks fraser coast hervey bay job search jobseeker maryborough nikenbah unemployment



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