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Sue's Story (mother of Sophie)

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Customised Employment was the answer for Sophie.

Sophie is 24 and lives with her parents in Perth. In November 2018, Sophie secured her first real job. The position involves working as a horticultural assistant in the gardens at The University of Western Australia (UWA). Like many good things in life, Sophie’s meaningful employment took time to achieve. When contemplating her future work prospects, the family considered the things she showed interest in - and being outside in the fresh air was one of them.

The next phase was Sophie completing the Certificate 2 in Horticulture at Perth’s North Metropolitan Tafe. Then followed the search for work and it soon became apparent that she needed to be placed under the banner of an Australian Disability Enterprise (ADE) or Disability Employment Service (DES) program, despite neither category being a good fit.

Fortunately, it was not long afterwards that the family was introduced to the world of Customised Employment through Ticket to Work. During a comprehensive Discovery Process and with strong support from Gaelen Williams at Ticket to Work, the Customised Employment approach was used to help Sophie secure the gardening assistant job.

The position is very suited to Sophie’s personal requirements. It is for four hours per week with a wage based on the award rate and the potential for increased hours as time progresses. Some individual funding has enabled Sophie to attend with a support person. Sophie is physically strong and really enjoys being outside, so this is very meaningful work for her. Her confidence has grown and she has become more aware of the value of money.

Through some hard work and dedication, and by using the Customised Employment approach, Sophie now has entirely meaningful and appropriately paid employment - a truly wonderful end result. Customised Employment was the answer because it enabled a tailored and individualised approach.