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MatchWorks job seeker beats odds to gain employment

Geelong job seeker Gavin came to MatchWorks six years ago following a tragic accident that resulted in a broken back. He was only given a 50/50 chance of walking again after surgery.

MatchWorks East Geelong Business Development Consultant Chris Delamont said when Gavin came to MatchWorks in 2011 he was determined to work, but had limited education.

MatchWorks job seeker Chris and children at the Bellarine Kids Early Learning Centre.

MatchWorks job seeker Gavin and children at the Bellarine Kids Early Learning Centre.

“Gavin bounced through some unskilled labour positions but never lost hope of achieving his dream job,” Chris said.

“Gavin had always wanted to become a childcare worker. After some self-doubt and lack of support from external agencies, Gavin’s dream seemed to be slipping away and that created some other personal barriers to employment.”

After years of re-building, Gavin came back to MatchWorks and met with Chris to make the childcare career possible.

“Gavin said he had been told that ‘men don’t do that job and no one would employ a 40-year-old man’. I said ‘why not? I believe you can do it’. From that moment we never looked back,” Chris said.

Chris and another MatchWorks team member, Dawn Brown, assisted Gavin to enrol in a Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care at the Gordon. Gavin excelled at his course and was given glowing reports from his trainers.

MatchWorks job seeker Gavin and Bellarine Kids centre director Amy.

MatchWorks job seeker Gavin and Bellarine Kids centre director Amy.

Gavin was offered a position at Bellarine Kids Early Learning Centre in January this year, following a work placement.

Now six months on and the centre’s director Amy couldn’t be more pleased with Gavin. She said since he joined their team, he is one of the most positive and inspirational childcare workers at the centre, he is always happy and nothing fazes him.

Gavin said the centre has been so supportive.

“I’ve been able to open up about my past barriers to employment. That has made me feel that they are all behind me,” he said.