Sky is the limit for Matthew
Matthew lives with an Intellectual Disability.
When he joined Sureway Murray Bridge DES in August 2019, Matthew spoke with his new Consultant Darrell about not having worked in a while after being made redundant from his previous role. He and his nominee, Mother Jill, were looking for Matthew to get back into the work force so that he could achieve more independence in his day-to-day life.
After much job hunting in Matthews hometown of Tailem Bend, Darrell was put in touch with John and Helen of Regional Profile Cutters (RPC). RPC manufacturer metal signs and other metal-wares, quite often taking their products out to country markets for sale, as well as having workshops and a small shop on the family premises.
Darrell spent some time getting to know John and Helen, and their business.
“I learned the metal sign fabrication process in and out, and got to see the workshops in action” said Darrell. “This was really helpful for both knowing the employers needs and to know what kinds of tasks any employee may need to do.”
John was seeking someone to help him out in the workshop, particularly for the range of time-consuming tasks such as scrapping the ‘spag’ off of the plasma table, sweeping and collecting and sorting cut-offs. Darrell knew that Matthew would be the perfect fit.
A meeting was arranged, and Matthew got a tour of the workshops and an introduction to the position on offer. The Sureway team were able to arrange a 2-week Paid Work trial to help Matthew and John decide of the role was the right fit for them both.
During his 2-week placement, Matthew was supported on-the-job by Darrell to get a handle on various tasks. In the second week, John presented Matthew with a new tool to clean the ‘spag’ off the cutting table after he had noticed that Matthew was struggling to use the existing round tool. The modified tool with flat edges made the task all the more easier for Matthew to do.
John also stated that he would be getting the materials to build Matthew a step so that he could reach the middle of the table easier – all before Matthew had even finished his work trial.
John and Helen also told of how their son also lives with disability and holds his own employment, which made the placement an even better fit.
Matthew finished his trial in early November and was offered paid employment on the spot. He is successfully supported in his new role by the Supported Wage System, a Wage Subsidy and ongoing support from the Sureway team. Darrell still comes out every shift to work with Matthew to keep him on track and encourage him to learn and build upon his workplace skills.
John has made the step for Matthew. Matthew was tasked with painting and lacquering the step to seal and protect it for years to come.
Pictured above: John (left) and Matthew in the workshop. Behind the table, Matthew is standing on the step that John made for him.