Karilee Ovens was a 48 year old indigenous job seeker who sought assistance from atWork Australia in Mandurah. She was suffering from depression and anxiety and was referred to our Psychological Services team.

atWork Australia offered support to Karilee by obtaining a police clearance, providing clothing for interviews and work experience as well as fuel vouchers. Karilee had previously worked as a Hairdresser although she did not want to return to this occupation at that stage. She entered the Diversity Dimensions program at Woolworths, which assists in the training and recruitment of indigenous workers. Karilee did participate in the required training sessions and tried out different roles in several stores although she had difficulty in maintaining her shifts and left the program.

Returning to Hairdressing was discussed as an option for Karilee, although she failed to turn up to interviews and suffered a relapse requiring psychological intervention and as a result a period of medical exemption from job seeking.

When she was medically fit, Karilee contacted atWork Australia and was very proactive in her approach to seeking employment. She decided that a change in scenery was required and wanted to move to the Shark Bay, in the far north of WA. She had already commenced her job seeking activities and was confident she would be successful. atWork Australia assisted Karilee with transport to Shark Bay, accommodation, clothing and fuel cards to use when she arrived.

Karilee commenced full time employment in September 2020 as a Customer Service Assistant at Billabong Roadhouse in Shark Bay.  She is pictured wearing her uniform alongside her Employment Consultant.

Karilee noted that ‘since being unemployed for several years and having no luck with job agencies and getting further behind and into debt, I decided to seek out employment myself. After sending out several emails and resumes I found employment in Shark Bay. Although where I work is isolated, it has taught me that you don’t necessarily need a lot of people around you to prove your self-worth. It wasn’t easy leaving my old life behind but when I got my first pay it made everything worthwhile.

Without the constant support and help along with the belief of my Employment Consultant, I would not have had the confidence to take the first step. atWork and my Employment Consultant assisted with my bus ticket along with vouchers making sure that I had food and uniforms and accommodation to start my new job.

My Employment Consultant keeps in touch with me and offers support whenever it is need. Thank you to all the atWork Australia staff. I love my job and you helped make it possible.’

Find out more here how JobActive is working together job seekers and employers to help them reach their goals.