Closing date is 5.00 pm. Tuesday 28 February 2017. The three stories with the most votes will win.
Winners will be notified by 7 March 2017

  • George Cieslar

    image of George Cieslar

    My name is George, I am 27 years old, have Epilepsy and Autism. For the past 2 years I have been a participant of the NDIS. I self-manage all of my supports and am a client of No Limitts for nearly 2 years. Since self managing and the help of No Limitts I have been provided with the opportunities to make all of my own decisions and choices. I receive a lot more support, encouragement and this allows me to be as independent as I can be. Currently, I am employed with the Ability Centre. I have been actively working at the Ability Centre for roughly 4 years. I work 3 days a week totalling 15 hours per week. I am a Gardener there. Some things I do are mulching, mowing, fertilizing, weeding and pruning and I have completed Cert 1 Horticulture. My work at the Ability Centre has provided me with the experience, knowledge and the abilities to further myself for my own business. Roughly a year ago, my staff at No Limitts helped me establish my own small business. They helped me register my own business name, “Little George’s Gardening Services”, ABN and maintain customers on a regular basis. I started my business last year in June 2016 and I am happy with how far I have come. I started off by talking to my support workers coming up with a business plan, including my business name and the best way to market my business. With my support worker, we started off by walking around my suburb doing a letterbox drop. After a couple of weeks, we had some phone calls and I started attending customers’ houses with a support worker I have been able to build up great customer rapport and attend to the customers’ house on my own now. Before my business, I struggled with some social skills. I wasn’t confident and comfortable going to meet new customers on my own and needed a support worker with me. Now, I am able to attend my customers’ houses with confidence and can now talk comfortably with them with confidence. I have been able to use my skills and experience from my current workplace and implement them within my business. The flexibility I have with self managing and the support of No Limitts has allowed me to be able to focus more on the things I like to do and my hobbies. Making the choice to self-manage has been the best decision I have ever made. I am happier within myself and I feel I am in control of my own choices. I have noticed positives changes within myself and I would highly recommend anyone in a position to self-mange to give it a go.

  • Daniel Nunn

    image of Daniel Nunn

    “I work at Curtin University” “Live in my house with my best mate Rhys” “love gardening, swimming, wine and watching tennis”. My son Dan, says this, who enjoys a typical life of any 25 year old despite having mixed seizure disorder and undiagnosed complex disabilities. As he was coming to the end of his school years I was repeatedly told he didn’t fit criteria. Fortunately at the same time Inclusion Alberta, Canada gave me the opportunity to participate in a study tour. I met people with complex disabilities attending mainstream school, university, working and living in their own homes. I couldn’t un-see what was possible and thought ‘ok this is what we are going to do’.

    I was also introduced to microboards and as I came to understand it had absolutely nothing to do with computers and instead something to help me achieve my vision for Daniel DTMC Inc. was formed. His microboard is made up of 6 people who are friends and family who put his goals, dreams, needs and desires at the centre of their decisions and actions. An introductions by a microboard member was to a Professor at Curtin University where I nervously shared my vision and ideas for Dan and his work life. He was very interested and ten months later called to say he’d thought of a job Dan might be interested to do as a starting point.

    The role was to raise the profile of and do the recycling. He felt with Dan going along in his large custom made wheelchair knocking on peoples doors once a week to empty their bins would likely increase their quota. We weren’t sure if he'd would be up for this kind of work but we noticed he loved knocking on doors, meeting people, taking transport. We also noticed he was only emptying 3 bins after 3 months!!

    I had a chat to Dan about all the things we were noticing he liked about the job. I acknowledged emptying bins wasn’t the flashest job going and shared my first job was to clean out cages at a vet clinic.

    The following week Dan emptied 7 bins and we went on to complete 2 floors. Soon after he was offered to be paid at the same rate of pay as anyone else….writing that still brings up a lot of emotion for me.

    My son feels proud of the work he does and I know this because when he prepares for presentations he does not wish to share about his voluntary work. He’s a valued member of the workforce, his work colleagues share with me how much they appreciate and enjoy Daniel coming to their offices each week.

  • Joel Bradford

    image of Joel Bradford

    “It makes me happy to have work experience”- Joel

    “He always comes home happy and excited after his work experience shift” – Joel’s mum

    Mid last year we held a planning meeting with Joel (then a year 10 student) and his mum. It was in this meeting that Joel was introduced to the Employment Discovery framework and decided to utilise his current funding to start this process and discover his employment potential! At the time Joel was completing work experience at an Australian Disability Enterprise which he wasn’t really enjoying. Joel’s supports identified that this wasn’t the right placement for him and were keen to see Joel gain some experience in a field he was interested in.

    Joel was supported to complete the discovery process and had assistance to develop a resume. A team of supports were created during this process which included Joel’s mum, his teacher and principal, former mentor from Inclusion WA and key staff from the Swan City Youth Centre that Joel attends weekly. All supports were interviewed and Joel was observed both in the household completing his weekly chores and at the youth centre. Following this it was apparent Joel’s vocational themes were cooking/food preparation and technology.

    A range of local business were explored for informational interviews including local cafés, technology retailers and computer repair stores. This was completed by both Joel’s mentor and his mum (who was very proactive in the process!) Following the informational interviews Joel clearly showed interest in working at a café, where previously most discussions were around finding Joel work experience at a technology retailer. Joel with the support from his mentor identified many opportunities in the Midland area to complete work experience. Eight local businesses were interested in meeting with Joel to discuss work experience opportunities.

    Joel is currently completing a 10 week work experience placement at a funky café in Midland with support from his mentor. He loves going to work experience every Saturday and the feedback received from the café owners and Joel’s mentor is that he is a very valued member of their staff. Joel started off doing a small amount of hours per shift but has quickly picked up new tasks which have seen his shift time’s increase. His mentor is now phasing out of supporting him. Where to after this? There has been some talk about extending his placement and eventually transitioning Joel into a paid position at the café. Stay tuned

  • Nathan Reibel

    image of Nathan Reibel

    Hi my name is Nath. I finished school last year and I'm nearly 19. My mum and I were worried how I was going to manage out of school. It was a little scary for me. Everyone have made it an easy transition.

    On Sunday mornings I go to the Busselton Aero Club to volunteer. I got this job as for many years my family and support workers from Enable, through the NDIS plan, have taken me to the airport to watch planes. Recently my support worker was approached by the aero club to ask if I could work there and look after the club room, wash the trainer plane and sometimes fuel a plane. A dream come true for me.

    On Mondays I work for my brother Guy and his wife Kate on their farm. I have been using the ride on mower for a year and Kate said I follow my line really well. I do some outside cleaning and I can use the blower.

    On Tuesday and Thursdays I work for Cape Cellars bottle shop. I clean floors, stock fridges with cool drink and make sure there are chips and nuts on the shelf. I help with any job that I am asked. I got this job because mum, my sister Bree and myself advertised on social media that I was looking for work. My other workers watch out for me in case I have a seizure.

    On Tuesday evenings I work as a volunteer at the community kitchen in Dunsborough as a waiter. One of my support workers from Enable found this job for me. I know everyone and I love to see them. Sometimes my mum comes down for dinner and I like her to see what I'm doing.

    On Wednesday afternoon I play in a golf competition and I have made some friends. My mum used to make yummy food to take along to share, but starting next week my support worker is going to help me make our food before we go. Last week I got a birdie.

    On Friday I'm starting with a support worker to prepare a meal for my family. I will decide a meal, make a list, shop, cook and cleanup. I would like by the end of the year to be able to prepare 4 different meals. On Saturdays my mum is teaching me to use the washing machine and I help with the vacuuming.

    My family say that one day I will want to go and live with my mates in a group home. For now I really like living at home. I have a 3 wheeler pushbike, a 4 wheeler motorbike, I swim in our pool, I love technology and I can read and write.

    I have a intellectual disability, CP and I'm on the Autism spectrum but what I really don't like is being a epileptic as it tries to stop me doing things. I love having routine and I love going to work.

  • Kiara Jade Hicks

    image of Kiara Jade Hicks

    Hi, my name is Kiara Hicks and my hobby business is called "All Thingz Dogz".

    I sell gourmet dog treats, doggy gift bags and a range of doggy accessories.

    All gourmet treats are handmade by me with all natural ingredients and lots and lots of love!

    With support and help from my Mum and my support workers I hope to expand my business in the future to possibly include dog walking and dog grooming.

    I absolutely love all animals and they are my main interest in life.

    I have fulfilled many animal related volunteer roles over the years but I really needed an income as I also love to shop!

    The benefit of starting my own business from scratch is that Mum has been able to structure everything to enable me to do as much as possible independently. I am able to track all my incoming and outgoing costs with an easy to follow spreadsheet. I also have easy to follow, explicit tick chart recipes when making my doggy treats.

    The fact my business is based on my main interest in life ensures that I maintain interest and I am always keen to work to keep my doggy customers happy.

    The hardest part was taking the leap and "giving it a go"

    THANKYOU for reading my story.

© 2016 National Disability Services. All Rights Reserved.