Krystal from Rockingham has certainly experienced a change in her circumstances in the past 18 months.

She had an unstable childhood involving a number of factors including drug and alcohol abuse, homelessness, domestic violence, mental health issues, criminal behaviour and limited support networks. She was also estranged from her parents and her three younger siblings, and had limited schooling in Albany.

Krystal moved from Albany to Rockingham in an attempt to get a fresh start on life and registered with atWork Australia. She was under the care of Michelle Gainey, Employment Consultant.

At that time, Krystal was living with a friend’s parents and had been moving around a lot. Due to her unstable accommodation and lack of support, she was an unreliable student at several of the courses she started and was relying on drugs and alcohol to function. She would move houses every three months and did not have a driver’s license.

Krystal did enrol and eventually completed a TAFE courses in Certificate II in General Education for Adults and Certificate II in Pre-Apprenticeship in Carpentry and Joinery through the PaTH program. These courses were very interrupted due to medical exemptions received as a result of relapses of drug and alcohol abuse and poor mental health. During these exemptions Krystal did move back and forth to Albany, depending on where she was able to find housing. She was also required to move TAFE from Kwinana to Rockingham due to personal reasons.

Michelle from atWork Australia continued to maintain contact with her and provided ongoing vocational counselling and support.

At the completion of the PaTH program, Krystal commenced a three-month internship at Samy Medical Practice in Rockingham as a Patient Relations Officer.

Krystal thrived during the internship, grew in confidence and forged new positive relationships. As a result she was offered a full time position as soon as her internship finished and is now a valued member of the Samy Medical Team. She was chosen to represent her employer at the recent atWork Australia Employer Awards.

Krystal has recently obtained her Driver’s License, purchased a car and is now saving to purchase a house. She has also reconnected with her family members and is currently living with her father in Rockingham.

“I am no longer wondering each day if I will live to see another, I can now see a future for myself and others in my life,” Krystal said.

atWork Australia were so impressed with Krystal’s perseverance and determination to change her circumstances that they nominated her for the National Employment Services Association (NESA) Awards for Excellence in the category of Achiever of the Year. Krystal is a finalist in these national awards, to be announced on 8 August 2018 in Brisbane.

Best of luck Krystal!