If you’re a hiring manager with a CV sitting on your desk from a candidate that’s experienced homelessness, we hope Ken’s story will be of interest.
Before making a move to Queensland at the age of 30, Ken had drifted around Australia. A ‘bit of a lost soul’ in his own words.
He travelled up to Maryborough and started working in the southern pine plantations of the Fraser Coast, where he settled into a permanent lifestyle.
Forestry was a job Ken loved. But he made mistakes. A serious addiction cost him his job of 15 years, as well as his home and he ended up reliant on friends for a place to crash.
At rock bottom, he made a significant decision. Leaving Maryborough behind him, a few years ago Ken headed for a fresh start in Queensland’s Central Highlands.
“If you have negativity in your life, you need to get rid of it and find positivity in friends and the things you do,” says Ken. “It makes you feel better as a person.”
With help and support from the MAX team in Emerald, Ken secured voluntary work at the local Police-Citizens Youth Club. He performed so well he was offered paid work and he’s now using his own experiences to help mentor young people in tough circumstances. He’s also doing a qualification in sports coaching.
PCYC Emerald club manager, Sergeant Julia Henderson, said: “Ken is possibly the hardest working person I have ever met.
“His positive outlook on life and ‘can-do’ attitude make him an absolute pleasure to work with and we feel lucky to have him on our team at PCYC Emerald.”
Our team in Emerald is privileged to have supported Ken over this time. He is such an inspiring and warm human being. But we’d also like to thank the PCYC for understanding that Ken’s experiences of homelessness and addiction didn’t define him.
One of the charities the MAX Foundation has donated to this year is Rosies. Volunteers at Rosies provide people living on the street with often desperately needed companionship, as well as food and drinks. The MAX Foundation is funded by employee donations and matched dollar for dollar by MAX Solutions. It donates to organisations nominated by its members.
If you’d like to find out more about the vital work that Rosies is doing and how to support them, check out their website.