The team at Mission Australia’s Disability Management Service (DMS) in Dandenong, Victoria first met Robert in 2016. Disability Management Service is for job seekers with disability, injury or health conditions who require Disability Employment Service (DES) assistance now, but are not expected to require long-term support in the workplace. In his initial assessment, Robert revealed a long list of health conditions that forced him out of his old factory job.

Without employment, Robert’s quality of life took a massive hit. He was forced to move back in with his ageing mother, which felt like a big step backwards for him as an independent, single man in his 40s. He said he felt sad that he could no longer take his young nephew to the football because he couldn’t afford to buy the tickets. As his confidence eroded, so did his motivation to learn new skills and find new job opportunities.

Our team worked closely with Robert to identify some potential employment avenues he hadn’t considered before. He decided that he’d like to have a go at security work, as it suited his physical ability and didn’t require any heavy lifting. We enrolled Robert into a security course and helped to pay for this as well as all of the necessary licences and background checks. We supported him throughout his study and celebrated with him when he earned his certificate.

Next we helped Robert find an employer who was understanding of his circumstances. A security company offered him a week of work, and even though its location meant getting to shifts would take more than two hours on public transport each way, Robert jumped at the opportunity. This was a real victory for Robert, who had transformed from someone who was lacking motivation into someone who was prepared to travel long distances to get to work.

After impressing his new employer in that initial week, we worked with them to get Robert placed at a local supermarket that was just a short bus ride from his house, making it much quicker, easier and cheaper to get to and from his shifts.

Robert has been employed with this security company for almost a year now. His employer is very pleased with his work, he gets lots of hours, and he is very happy in his role. His self-esteem and positivity have returned, and he has enough money once again to enjoy outings with his nephew.

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