At the age of 24, Rachael is finally working with children, a long-held dream for the mother-of-one from Cartwright, Sydney.
When Rachael first met with her Job Coach, Pauline, from the Miller, NSW office of atWork Australia, she revealed she had never worked before. She felt that prospective employers were reluctant to hire her once they found out she had an intellectual disability.
Her situation meant that, while she fervently wanted to work, and was passionate about children in particular, her lack of experience was an obstacle she was struggling to overcome.
Pauline began her sessions with Rachael by working on lifting her confidence, which was low. They discussed her skills and strengths and the sort of tasks she could do, as a way of building her self-esteem. After just a few meetings, Rachael had more self-confidence and was more determined than ever to find something that worked for her.
“Rachael wanted to show her family and friends that no matter your disability there is something out there for everyone,” Pauline said.
A childcare environment seemed to be a great fit for Rachael, so Pauline helped her to apply for the appropriate permits, including a Working with Children Check and a Police Check. Soon afterwards, she was offered an interview for a position as a support worker with a childcare centre in nearby Liverpool.
When Pauline told Rachael she had been offered the job, she was in tears. She couldn’t believe someone had finally given her this wonderful opportunity.
“Thank you for supporting me and being with me every step of the way,” Rachael told Pauline.
Her Job Coach also had kind works to share.
“It’s been a pleasure working with Rachael and seeing her so happy doing what she loves,” Pauline said.