Joel’s Happy Place is in the Garden

There’s a famous Chinese proverb that says “If you want to be happy for a lifetime, be a gardener”. For Myhorizon Employment and Training participant, Joel Speakman, he has found his happy place, working towards a career in horticulture and gardening.

26 year old Joel loves working outdoors, and joined Myhorizon’s Horticulture team doing work experience before gaining paid employment with Shedland Garden Nursery.

Michelle Robertson, owner of the Shedland Garden Nursery, employed Joel for 18 months right up until she closed down her business, and was impressed by his attention to detail and strong work ethic.

“Joel constantly performed well and soon became an integral and valued team member. He made a positive difference to our daily business operations every single day he was employed.” Said Michelle.

“As an employer, I found nothing was ever a problem for Joel. He was flexible and reliable, particularly when asked to do extra hours on a shift. Joel was always respectful and had a very polite nature”. Said Michelle.

Joel’s reliable and flexible work ethic, together with the right opportunity provided by employers such as Michelle, saw Joel recently move into a new paid job with Capalaba Nursery as a Nursery Assistant.

Joel’s Employment Coordinator, Jodie McIntosh, is passionate about matching the right employer with the right candidate, supporting Joel who has now started work with Capalaba Nursery only 2 days after finishing at Shedlands .

“It’s about opening new doors and opportunities to people who have so much to offer. The benefits work both ways, not only providing paid employment and new skills for our candidates, but also providing our local businesses and employers with recruits who bring a new energy, outlook, and work ethic”. Said Jodie.

For more information on Myhorizon’s Horticulture and Employment and Training services, Contact us.

Debra finds her calling

Working in a job you love is most people’s dream, but for Myhorizon client, Debra McIntyre, it’s become a happy reality, now working as a Food Assistant with McKenzie Aged Care – Capella Bay, Capalaba.

Having had various roles throughout her working life to support her family, last year Debra approached Myhorizon’s Employment and Training team at Wynnum, looking for new work opportunities.

With the help of Jodie Dickason, her Employment Coordinator, Debra was soon after taking on short-term paid work as a kitchen hand, and also volunteer work at Meals on Wheels to develop her skills, experience and new found love of food preparation.

“I could tell that Debra had found her calling, and knew there was a bigger and better role out there for her, we just had to find it. After a few months we found her the perfect position at Capella Bay where she loves going to work and contributing in a warm and friendly environment,” says Jodie.

Life is full for Debra, a single mother of three children, grandmother to eight grandchildren and most recently becoming a great grandmother, who still finds time to fish and spend quality time with her large family, but most importantly she enjoys contributing to society.

“This job has given Debra the ability to fill her bucket with a sense of purpose and belonging,” says Jodie. “It’s a perfect example that age is just a number and if you’re open to trying new things, who knows what doors may open for you”.

Thanks to this new role, Debra continues to flourish and has even planned a holiday to Sydney with her son to catch up with friends, something she has wanted to do for a long time.

Click here to find out  more about Myhorizon’s Employment and Training Service.

Myhorizon announces Wayne Clarke as its new Chair

Local disability services provider, Myhorizon, is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr Wayne Clarke as the new Chair of its Board of Directors.

Dr Clarke joined the Board in March 2012 and has held the position of Vice President over the last 2 years, and recently succeeded Louise Dudley as President and Chairman.

Victoria Knight, HBE employee at Myhorizon, and Dr Wayne Clarke, newly appointed President and Chair of the Board.

Spending much of his early career as a Speech therapist, Dr Clarke has worked with people with disability for many years and completing a PhD in the speech of cerebral palsy children has given him a strong understanding of working with people with disability. Dr Clarke has also worked for a number of non-profit organisations in executive roles, more recently for the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute in Sydney, and Mental Illness Fellowship of Qld through which he has gained a strong sense of the importance of community values.

 “My view of disability and the role of organisations like Myhorizon is to try and prevent the disabling aspects of disability so that people can grow and lead a positive life and look for education, employment and other services.

“The wider community may not be aware just how many people there are with disability. We need to try to bring them out to be active members of our community and promote a general acceptance by everybody. They all need support in one way or another and as a community I believe we all have a responsibility to support them.” Said Dr Clarke.

It’s a timely message leading up to International Day of People with Disability, celebrated on 3 December. This is a United Nations sanctioned day that promotes inclusivity and celebrates the achievements and contributions of people with disability. It is an opportunity for our community to make positive changes to the lives of 4.3 million Australians living with disability.

A strong example of this year’s theme of empowering people with disability, is the collaboration and job ownership displayed by the HBE team at Myhorizon. Victoria Knight (pictured with Dr Wayne Clarke) is one of many employees who says she enjoys working at Myhorizon because she likes to come and get her jobs done and be with her friends. Myhorizon’s HBE employees work on a variety of mailing and packaging contracts for well-known businesses in the local area such as Sirromet Winery, as well as other businesses requiring similar services.

In addition to the mailing and packaging services offered by Myhorizon at their newly built Centre on Runnymede Road, Capalaba (next to Indigiscapes), they also provide a range of high quality services, all designed to support the ongoing needs of people with disability.

“The investment that has been made in Myhorizon’s new facilities and services is not just about preparing for the launch of NDIS next year, but also about having a modern facility that can be used by everyone in the community.

“You have members of the community coming in here, you’ve got people with disabilities helping in the café, and providing services back into the community. The fact that there is a facility that can provide you a good cup of coffee and you know in doing that you are supporting the community effort, really is important.” Said Dr Clarke.

 For more information on Myhorizon’s full range of services, click here.