At 50, Michelle felt that her age coupled with a painful condition of her leg were hampering her chances of finding work, but she now has a full-time job doing something she loves.
From Perth, Michelle suffers from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome of her left leg after a workplace injury tore her knee’s ligaments and cartilage. With symptoms lasting many months or more, causing chronic pain, Michelle was feeling down and struggling with low self-esteem when she approached the Mandurah office of atWork Australia in 2019.
Despite being discouraged, she was initially placed quite quickly into an office management role with help from the employer engagement team. However, the position became redundant and Michelle was once more in need of job-seeking support.
Her Job Coach, Jamie says despite her bad luck Michelle was motivated to seek a new and exciting challenge.
“She took every opportunity on offer and was very open to suggestions and employment options,” Jamie says.
With Jamie in the lead, the entire Mandurah atWork Australia team worked together to find Michelle suitable employment. Jamie began by working to build Michelle’s self-esteem – helping to challenge her negative “self-talk”, acknowledge her positive traits and stop comparing herself to others. Others bought Michelle new interview clothes and a fuel card and she took part in a round of mock interviews to test her skills.
Then, a position as a Job Coach came up working out of the Gosnells office of atWork Australia. The team felt that Michelle would be perfect for the role, with her experience and skills, and she was offered the job.
Jamie says Michelle was ecstatic to learn she’d been offered a full-time role with the team.
“Michelle has a new lease on life which you can see in her exuberant personality!” she says.
“She’s been a pleasure to work with – watching her come out of her shell was fantastic and it’s now a privilege to work alongside her.”
Michelle, who is completing her Disability Employment Services (DES) training, says her initial appointment with Jamie was inspiring.
“Jamie, Alynka and Justine were such great support on my journey to employment,” she says.
atWork Australia offers DES from over 300 locations across Australia. We strive to continuously improve to ensure people with disability are at the centre of planning and service delivery. Are you looking for work or know someone who is? atWork Australia can help. Contact us today on 1300 080 856 or enquire online to get started.