If you’re a school leaver living with a disability, don’t have work experience or a resume, and you’re not quite sure what employment path you want to walk down- Joblife Employment’s Shailer Park Consultant Jason Holtham can help you.

When Chris Smith, an inexperienced school leaver without a resume, came to Jason’s office, he had been sceptical of what Joblife could do to help.

“Chris had come from another provider, and they were just trying to tick the boxes and could not place him. Chris lives with autism, and they didn’t take the time to get to know that he did not want to work anywhere where he would be in the spotlight or be up front in any industry.” Jason explained.

While it took time to build Chris’ trust, Jason took the time.

“Chris knew everything about the Survivor series, including the overseas versions, he could tell you every winner and runner up. He knew every episode like the back of his hand. By happenstance, I am good friends with Sala, who was on one of the first Survivor series in New Zealand.

So, I called Sala during one of Chris’ consultations.  I handed Chris the phone and he cried he was so happy. They spoke on the phone for over an hour. Sala and Chris keep in contact. Sala was actually supposed to come to Australia in 2020 to meet Chris but unfortunately this did not happen because of COVID.” Jason said.

Jason describes Chris as a storyteller, and he needed to be able to express himself without being interrupted. Jason thought being a companion for the elderly might be a good fit.

“Old people love when young people come in and talk to them.” Jason said.

Chris was not convinced he would be break into the aged care industry, but Jason had faith in Chris.

“I thought volunteering at an aged care facility would be a great way to get Chris experience and build his confidence. Volunteering was a great stepping-stone because it doesn’t require a resume and the experience could be added to his resume in the future.

I drove him to three different facilities in the Ipswich area, where he had moved to. He got an interview with Cabanda Care. I drove him to the interview, and he was asked to volunteer once a week, doing a four-hour shift.

Chris loved it so much that he ended up volunteering five days a week just because he wanted to come in. After six months of volunteering, Cabanda Care wanted Chris to do his Certificate 3 in Individual Support, and they facilitated Chris doing his placement hours with them.” Jason explained.

Chris has since completed his certificate and is working full time at Cabanda Care, loving his work and confident in his chosen path.

Joblife has the talent and the connections to get you started- no matter how inexperienced you are. To connect with us, click here. Or to find more information about our Young People’s Employment Pathways (YPEP) Program, click here.