atWork Australia and Essential Employment & Training agreement expands Disability Employment Services offer into Wollongong, Shoalhaven and Southern Highlands

WOLLONGONG – Leading national Disability Employment Services (DES) provider atWork Australia and local provider, Essential Employment & Training, have entered into an agreement to deliver disability employment services in Wollongong, the Southern Ranges and Shoalhaven areas of NSW, under the atWork Australia brand.

Chris Gandy, Chair of Essential Employment & Training said the provider had been actively looking for the right partner for the ongoing delivery of DES across the region.

“It has been our privilege to deliver services to people with disability in the Illawarra and Southern Ranges region for many years. We recognised we could deliver even better Disability Employment Services by partnering with atWork Australia. The agreement means the people with disability and employers we work with get all the intimate community knowledge and commitment of the Essential Employment & Training team, backed with the strong foundation of a well-resourced and equally committed national company,” he said.

Essential Employment & Training will continue to provide support to people with disability under the NDIS and look forward to strategically partnering with atWork Australia to provide improved disability employment services. Mr Gandy said: “We are proud of our legacy and will continue to be an active member of our community through our delivery of NDIS services.”

General Manager of atWork Australia, Michael Kolomyjec, said the agreement expanded atWork Australia’s footprint from 48 Employment Service Areas to 50, providing employment support to people with disability across 184 locations in six states.

“We are also delighted to welcome 19 talented Essential Employment & Training people to the atWork Australia team. People with disability who are looking for a job will still be dealing with the same great people, in the same locations offering an excellent service.

“The Essential Employment & Training team is deeply connected to their local areas and part of the community fabric. Thirty-two years of participating in the community and changing lives is a huge achievement.

“That’s why this is such a great fit for us. While we are now a large DES provider, the key to our success remains building local connections and relationships and putting our clients at the heart of what we do. Together we will support hundreds of people with disability into meaningful employment across Wollongong, Shoalhaven and the Southern Ranges.”

The agreement took effect on 16 July 2018. Services will be delivered by the same people in the same locations with no disruption to clients. In the coming weeks, the disability employment locations will be branded as atWork Australia.

About Essential Employment & Training

Essential Employment & Training is community organisation providing a range of social, training, community participation and employment services.

Essential Employment & Training has been operating in the community for 32 years as leading provider of service to people with a disability in Southern and Western NSW and delivers a number of community services for disadvantaged and disabled people through NDIS and Disability Employment Services.