Raphael races ahead in Underwood

"It was hard trying to find the right words when speaking to employers."

August 24 2017

Raphael in his element dismantling car parts at Underwood Wrecking.

23 year old Raphael from Gailes, QLD has an auditory processing disorder that makes it hard for him to take in and communicate information. 

Eager to find a job, Raphael said his biggest barrier was effective communication. 

“It was hard trying to find the right words when speaking to employers,” he said.


With the support of Goodna Placement Consultant Dion Aniflow, Raphael learned to enjoy the job seeking process. 

“We’d have set days to go out and meet employers face to face; I learned how to speak to employers,” Raphael explained. 

Dion said keeping Raphael motivated was his main goal. 

“Once you fall out of work, getting back into it is really hard. I tried to keep Raphael positive by taking him out to meet employers once or twice per week.

"We were focused on getting him into the automotive industry, that’s what he wanted to do. I just tried to keep him on this path.”
 


As a self-proclaimed ‘car nut’, Raphael managed to pick up a few odd jobs in car detailing, but poor decision making resulted in the loss of these jobs. 

Goodna Health Services Officer Dawne Rajadurai worked with Raphael to build his self-esteem and find a job that aligned with his strengths. 

“He’s eager, but needed to be encouraged and prompted. Communication was the biggest difficulty,” Dawne said.

As luck would have it, an employer from Underwood Wrecking contacted MAX Employment Goodna as they were in need of a Wreckers Yard Assistant. Preferably someone with experience that would work alongside the dismantling team, removing the tyres from cars. 

Gladys Hess, account manager from the Eight Mile Plains Employer Business Centre suggested that Underwood Wrecking consider a different type of candidate, someone who has transferrable skills, a willingness to work and maybe and interest or passion for cars. 

Someone like Raphael.  

Raphael was perfect for the role with his previous experience and positive attitude. The National Work Experience Program (NWEP) provided an opportunity for Raphael to demonstrate his skills and capabilities within the role, and also help him better understand the job. The work experience was closely supported through both on and off site post placement support. 

“I observed Raphael at work several times,” said Dawne. “He’s got a general routine which is good, and someone was on site to help him learn the tasks.”

Following the work experience, Raphael was successful in securing the position and has now been in the role for close to two months. 

Raphael says the best part about the job is getting to be around cars all week.

“I like being able to work on the whole car, learning new parts about the car and how it all works,” he said. 

“I think he found his niche,” Dion said. “I couldn’t praise him enough.”


Raphael’s life is different now. 

“It’s better,” he said. “I’m able to hang out with my friends and spend a little bit more than I was able to when I was unemployed.”

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