TRACQS has been collaborating with the owner of Frogs Restaurant and Catering in Kuranda, Terrence (Terry) Pates, to provide training opportunities in the hospitality industry for TRACQS job seekers through the Trialling Pathways to Real Jobs program.   

Frogs Restaurant and Catering, created in 1980, is founded, owned, and operated by Terry and his wife Victoria. Throughout the years, Frogs has been an integral part of Kuranda Village life and is recognised as a hospitality hotspot by locals and tourists alike.  

Since commencing with TRACQS in December 2022, Terry has provided training opportunities to Kuranda job seekers looking to enter hospitality work as part of the Trialling Pathways to Real Jobs program. To date, Terry and his team have trained and mentored thirteen job seekers, offering valuable knowledge through hands-on experience and skills-based training at their establishment.  

This project was developed and aimed towards job seekers with limited to no employment history or work-related skills, to open the doors to the paid employment opportunities available to them and build their confidence in the process.   

The duration of training varies between participants, allowing Frogs staff to take a tailored approach to the individualised training they offer. This approach considers the job seeker’s previous experience, current skill set and learning goals. All participants are compensated with wages to support their journey into becoming experienced hospitality workers.  

The participants that connected with Frogs have developed a range of hospitality-related skills, including coffee-making and barista duties, customer service skills, cash handling, POS and EFTPOS systems, presentation standards, kitchenhand tasks, and safe food handling and preparation.  

Throughout this experience, Terry has also utilised the TRACQS Connect Online Work for the Dole activity space and computers, to assist participants one-on-one in acquiring their Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) and food safety certificates. This official learning backs the practical skills they are learning at Frogs and expands the opportunities available to them as newly qualified workers.  

Through consistently supporting TRACQS participants in this training initiative, Terry has hired two job seekers as employees at Frogs Restaurant and Catering after recognising their potential during training. Many other participants have now also moved on to other opportunities with local hospitality employers, where they can utilise their training and provide quality service to Kuranda locals and tourists.  

We heard from some of our participants while working with Frogs Restaurant and Catering through the Trialling Pathways to Real Jobs initiative, and they had nothing but praise to share about their experience.  

“I am learning how to make coffees, shakes and smoothies, prepare and serve food, speak to customers, work in a team, use the till, cook, clean and take orders. I enjoy the work environment and people I work with,” shared Telita, TRACQS participant.   

“TRACQS is very helpful. They are providing uniforms and shoes for me. They helped me get this job at Frogs and I’m so thankful. I’m enjoying my training and have learnt many skills in the hospitality industry. I’m enjoying getting back into the workforce,” shared Chloe, TRACQS participant.  

“I have enjoyed starting with Frogs. It has been good to keep active and learn new skills, such as coffee making. Gaining new skills has helped build my confidence and will be helpful when I find full-time work,” shared Evangeline, TRACQS participant.

“I have learnt barista skills, communication skills, vocal projection, time management and have obtained my RSA,” shared Meika, TRACQS participant.

Through the Trialling Pathways to Real Jobs program, which moved into the new Community Projects Initiative from July, TRACQS has connected with local employers such as Terry who believe in supporting the opportunities available to local job seekers. Frogs Restaurant and Catering has been a pillar in the employment journeys of thirteen job seekers so far, and the TRACQS team looks forward to continuing its collaboration to support participants in their personal and professional development.