Lucy lands her dream job!

Lucy has landed her dream job, thanks to the support of Yooralla and her National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) plan.

Funded through the NDIS’ School Leavers Employment Supports (SLES) – designed to support Year 12 school leavers with disability to transition from school to employment – Lucy enrolled into the hospitality program at Yooralla’s Leongatha Community Hub, with a long-term NDIS goal of getting a paid hospitality job.

“I always wanted to work in hospitality as it gives you the opportunity to meet different people from all around the world. It is also great for travelling – wherever you go there is a job in hospitality,” said Lucy.

Lucy, 19, said the Hub’s hospitality program covered all aspects of the hospitality industry.

“I loved learning all the different skills including food preparation, plating, setting up the restaurant, clearing tables, waitressing and barista skills. The program is also really fun as you are learning with your friends,” she said.

Then just a few months into the program, Lucy was invited, as part of the Yooralla hospitality team, to participate in the launch of the government’s ‘A Job for Everyone’ campaign in Gippsland.

The aim of the campaign, an initiative of the Australian Government National Disabilities Coordination Officer (NDCO) Program, is to encourage businesses to employ more people with disability.

Vanessa Holness, Community Development Worker at the Leongatha Community Hub, said that the Yooralla hospitality team was invited to host at the event to showcase just how capable and professional employees with disability can be.

“They worked front and back of house; some waitressing and running the food, others working in the kitchen supporting the venue’s head chef with food preparation,” said Vanessa.

The launch, held at the Lucinda Estate Winery, was attended by more than 50 people.

“Everyone in the hospitality team did an amazing job and we received overwhelmingly positive feedback from all the guests but Lucy made such an impression on the winery’s head chef and his team, that two days after he rang offering her a job,” said Vanessa.

Lucy said the job offer was a complete surprise.

“I couldn’t believe it! I was very excited but also a little nervous. In my new role, I mainly work front of house and also meet and greet the customers. I also waitress and do some bar work. I’m really enjoying my new job and without Yooralla this wouldn’t have been possible!” she said.

Lucy continues to attend the Yooralla hospitality program at the Leongatha Community Hub one day a week to continue developing her catering and hospitality skills.

Yooralla has Community Hubs across Victoria, where people with disability can receive the support they require, meet new friends and get out in their local community, all while learning new skills. Read more about them here.

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