Job Quest empowering adults with a disability to build work skills and confidence
A new employment program for adults with a disability is to be piloted by Gateways Support Services.
Job Quest has been developed by Gateways to empower adults with a disability to build their work skills and confidence in a safe and supportive team environment.
Nathan, 20, is among the first group of participants to be part of the program based out of Gateways Community Place, North Geelong.
The former Barwon Valley School student said he was looking forward to learning new skills and gaining experience towards his dream of working in a café or restaurant.
‘I thought this would be a good way to get a proper job rather than staying at home playing video games,’ Nathan said.
Nathan, who enjoys keeping busy and meeting new people, already volunteers at Vinnies but is keen to step up into paid employment.
‘I would like to work in a café or a restaurant doing anything, really. Making coffee, preparing food and serving,’ he said.
As part of Job Quest, Nathan will gain work experience at onsite café Bear and Scoobs, as well as other business partners.
Program co-facilitator Debra Stephens said Job Quest worked to identify each individual’s skills and interests and then build their capacity in those areas.
‘The sessions combine training in teamwork, money management, workplace norms and time management delivered through skills development sessions and weekly volunteering days to give people a taste of different industries such gardening, food services and office work,’ Debra said.
‘Our team of experienced staff works with each participant to develop individual employment pathway plans to identify goals and the stepping stones to achieving them.’
She said this support may include engaging an employment provider, an Australian Disability Enterprise or an ongoing employment opportunity with a Gateways partner.
‘We are also seeking businesses who are interested in partnering with us to help people with a disability build their work skills.’
Kicking off in February, Job Quest is designed to be a self-paced program that runs during school terms.
Nathan said a future employer could help him do his best in the work place by taking time to explain tasks and processes and by giving him a little extra time to learn new things.
‘Having someone show me how to do new things a few times until I understand, is a big help. I also like it when people are specific with what they want me to do,’ Nathan said.
‘I would like future employers to know I am really nice and kind and I am really passionate to get things done, learn new things and help people.’
Anyone wanting to learn more the program can email email@example.com or call 5221 2984.