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Donations help flood affected TAFE Queensland students back to their feet

TAFE Queensland organised donations from various industry partners to help students return to work and study after the floods.

Donations from Trade Mutt, Bollé Safety, Bosch, NAWIC, Trade Tools, and the Trades and Builders Business Mentors have helped six TAFE Queensland students back to their feet after this year's Brisbane floods.

Five carpentry students from the Gold Coast and one light automotive student based at the Acacia Ridge campus were among those severely affected by the recent Brisbane floods. Items lost to the disaster included essential work tools, personal clothing, paperwork, and food.

After the teaching teams across the regions became aware of the students affected, they formed a collaborative co-op to raise much needed support from industry suppliers and partners.

The donations provided to the affected students included $1,200 in gift vouchers from Trade Tools, 100 pairs of Bollé ‘Silex’ Safety glasses, two boxes of Trade Mutt work shirts, over $7,000 in Bosch Power Tools, free business coaching and wellness sessions from the Business Sight (Business Programs for Trade and Building Business Owners) and a further $1,000 gift voucher to each of these six students from Trade Tools, proudly paid for and donated by the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC).

Alejandro Caita, a light automotive international student from TAFE Queensland's Acacia Ridge campus had his Brisbane north side home at Windsor inundated with over a metre of water and lost valuable work tools, clothes and personal belongings.

Alejandro, who came to Australia from Columbia to improve his mechanical skills and learn English, said that during the floods he had no family to turn to; only TAFE Queensland staff and his friends.

“Everything was flooded when I arrived at my home,” Alejandro said.

“The owner of the home was there trying to save my things and said that everything happened really fast; in less than an hour the house was under water.”

“My tool box was completely open and all the pieces were floating everywhere. I tried to save what I could but left with only a few personal items that could be saved.”

“I told my TAFE Queensland teacher about how bad the situation was and after that TAFE Queensland helped me by organising gift vouchers, tools and new work shirts.”

“I really appreciate all the support and help from TAFE Queensland and their industry partners because it was really important for my future and for me to be able to continue my studies here in Australia,” he said.

TAFE Queensland Carpentry teacher Adam Pringle, who led the initiative, said that it was extremely important that TAFE Queensland was able to support its students badly affected by the floods.

"The students affected were a mix of international students and domestic apprentices who would have really struggled to afford the cost of new equipment and clothing lost in the recent floods," Mr Pringle said.

“It was really great to see the response from our industry partners who all responded immediately with different offers of support and financial assistance.”

“TAFE Queensland is extremely thankful to them for their ongoing commitment and support to our students. It really has made a huge difference to our students' lives in their time of need.”

“It makes me really proud to be part of an organisation that goes above and beyond to help others in need,” he said.