WorkABILITY Day 2020: Our big day out for employers and participants

One person is leaning against the sales counter in a flower shop and smiling at the camera

Variety is a key theme that emerged from our annual WorkABILITY Day 2020. It was an action-packed day of adventure during which employers provided Forrest Personnel participants with work experience opportunities.

This year, the official WorkABILITY Day was Wednesday 16 September. But participants were hosted on other days of the week which provided optimal flexibility for all parties.

The big picture

Let’s get right down to the numbers. We had 45 participants being hosted by 26 employers. These work experience opportunities were organised by 24 Forrest Personnel Employment Consultants across 12 metro and regional locations in WA. Our busiest employer was Western Power – they hosted 10 participants for WorkABILITY Day! Experiences were really varied and ranged from flower arranging to talking technology.

We’re sharing just a small fraction of the stories and images that emerged. Please stay tuned for more on what the Western Power experiences were all about.

Daphne Florist

In Kalgoorlie, Daphne Florist owner Eileen Haltiner hosted participant Mikayla Westbrook and Employment Consultant Cindy Sparkes for the day.

One person is arranging flowers in a flower shop

Mikayla Westbrook arranging flowers at Daphne Florist. Photo by L’Amore Photography

They created floral arrangements, made bows from ribbons and unpacked stock. Eileen commented that: “Such a delightful day was spent showing our creative side to Mikayla. We all thoroughly enjoyed.”

Three people are standing in a flower shop, looking at the camera and smiling

Cindy Sparkes, Employment Consultant; Mikayla Westbrook, participant; and Eileen Haltiner, owner of Daphne Florist. Photo by L’Amore Photography


Coastal IT Support

In the Shire of Harvey, a duo of participant Isaac Warnock and Employment Consultant Shelby Burns spent the day at Coastal IT Support in Treendale.

Two people are standing in the entrance of a shop with a sign that says Coastal IT Support

Participant Isaac Warnock and Employment Consultant Shelby Burns in front of Coastal IT Support. Photo by oxy images

Director Mark Clark hosted the crew and they discussed and explored a whole range of IT and technical topics. When asked about the experience, Shelby reflected that: “It was a very insightful day. I think that Isaac now has more direction in terms of working towards a possible future in IT.”

Two people are standing in a computer shop. One is looking at the camera. The other is looking at a computer

Participant Isaac Warnock with Director Mark Clark at Coastal IT Support. Photo by oxy images

Shire of Harvey

Meanwhile, participant Lorelei Giorgi’s placement, also in the Shire of Harvey, was brokered by Employment Consultant Shay Kumar who visited twice on the day. Lorelei was kept very busy setting up a calendar of events and attending an open day for the new Harvey Youth Space.

When asked about her day, Lorelei told us (with a beaming smile) that: “I really enjoyed myself, and helping with the calendar of events was just great.” Lorelei was introduced to Shire of Harvey President Paul Gillet and he commented that: “It was fantastic to have Lorelei in the Shire of Harvey office for the day and she made a valuable contribution helping out the community development team.”

Three people are standing and looking at the camera while smiling. The person on the left is holding a framed certificate

Shire of Harvey President Paul Gillet, participant Lorelei Giorgi and Corporate and Community Engagement Officer Amy Pitts

Dunsborough Library

According to Employment Consultant Nakita Fernandes in Busselton, participant Taylor Anderson had a really successful day at the Dunsborough Library. Taylor said: “I had a wonderful experience . . . I was a bit nervous but really enjoyed. Thank you for the opportunity. I am so glad I came back from Perth for it. And, thank you for my lunch too.”

One person is sitting in a library and looking at the camera. They are sitting under a decorative tent marquee

Participant Taylor Anderson at the Dunsborough Library

News just in is that Taylor was awarded a 3-month internship with possible work at the Busselton or Dunsborough Library through the City of Busselton. Bravo to all parties who have brought this to fruition.

If you’re an employer and keen to consider hosting a work experience participant, please reach out.

Feature photo: Mikayla Westbrook at Daphne Florist. Photo: L’Amore Photography

Forrest Personnel is a local charity. We specialise in supporting people with health conditions, injuries and disabilities to find and keep jobs.

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