Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Package (VARP) – Program Info

This program is funded by:


The Victorian Government has provided $500 million to the Working for Victoria initiative to help our community and contribute to Victoria’s ability to respond to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Package (VARP) is funded by the Victorian Government to a total of $9 million and will follow the criteria of the Youth Employment Scheme (YES) and offers young people paid work experience in the Victorian Public Service/agencies or local government.

The program provides 300 young people aged 15 to 24 with an opportunity to work for a minimum of 12 months while completing an accredited traineeship or apprenticeship. VARP aims to increase the participation of disadvantaged young people in the workforce, while assisting communities to meet future skill and employment needs.

This program will be available to all Victorian State and Local government departments and agencies. With the goal of having a wide spread of jobs available across all regions of Victoria.

Training qualifications may include:

  • Aged Care
  • Automotive (Mechanical)
  • Building Maintenance
  • Business Administration
  • Carpentry
  • Child Care
  • Community Services
  • Electrical
  • Information Technology
  • Landscaping / Parks and Gardens
  • Plumbing
  • Sport and Recreation

See Premier Daniel Andrews’ Media Release on Friday, 4 September 2020 for further information.

GTO Eligibility Criteria

Minimum of 300 new apprenticeship or traineeship placements with government agencies (YES criteria)

Targets: 50% male/female breakdown, 50% regional/metropolitan breakdown

GTOs will also be provided with potential candidates that have registered on the Jobs Victoria “Sidekicker” website.

Priority will be given to disadvantaged  job seekers – including long term unemployed, Indigenous, people with a disability and women in non-traditional sectors (

Individual Eligibility

In order to be eligible for VARP, individuals must be:

  • aged 15 to 24 years at the commencement of the apprenticeship/traineeship
  • not an existing or retrenched “out-of-trade” apprentice or trainees

GTO Funding

AEN are managing this program. A minimum total of 300 new apprenticeship/traineeship places are available to a maximum value of $30,000 inclusive of GST per placement – excluding any other government funded incentives.  The maximum payment is the equivalent to approximately the initial 12 months full-time salary costs of the apprentice/trainee. This fee includes any training costs, PPE or other employment related costs incurred by the individual, the GTO and the host employer.

Records and Reporting

In relation to the Funding provided under your MoU with us, you shall register Participants and provide information to us uploaded onto the AEN online portal and the Working for Victoria SideKicker portal in accordance with the following requirements:

Milestone 1 – Employment Commencement

  1. Initial job vacancy listed on SideKicker (
  2. Employment Confirmation Form signed by both the GTO representative and apprentice/trainee and uploaded to the AEN VARP Portal (
  3. SideKicker job vacancy closed
  4. Invoice from You to AEN for a maximum payment of $15,000 incl. GST on approval of all submitted documentation.

Case Study

Completion of the Case Study Form summarising the host and apprentice/trainee prior to milestone 2. This can be completed anytime during the initial 6 months of employment but is required before the milestone 2 payment.

Milestone 2 – 26-week Employment Anniversary

  1. Employment Payslip showing date on or after the 26-week anniversary, employee and original host employer details and uploaded to the AEN VARP Portal
  2. Confirmation of RTO enrolment for approved apprenticeship/traineeship uploaded to the AEN VARP Portal
  3. Invoice from YOU to AEN for a maximum payment of $15,000 incl. GST on approval of all submitted documentation.

Milestone 3 – 12-month Employment Anniversary (signed form by GTO/YOU)

  1. Confirmation of 12-month completion
  2. Confirmation of next steps for the apprentice/trainee uploaded to the AEN VARP Portal

AEN may request access to the GTO for the full apprentice/trainee and host employer employment details for the purposes of meeting independent auditors’ requirements. All personal and employment details must be kept by the GTO until 30 June 2022.