Breaking Barriers is a new podcast from MatchWorks exploring remarkable stories about why work matters, and how it’s changing the lives of some incredible people.

In this series, Natalie Jones discovers a gamer using imagined worlds to create better realities, two mad-keen sports fans who found their dream job working alongside some of Australia’s greatest sporting heroes, and we check into Hotel Etico – Australia’s first ‘social enterprise hotel’ where holidays create opportunities. But first, she meets a woman who fled for her life from Iraq and is now using her lived-experience to help other refugees.

On this episode of Breaking Barriers, host Natalie Jones hears the heart-wrenching story of a woman who escaped to Australia after life-threatening circumstances forced her to flee Iraq. How did a MatchWorks program assist her with overcoming trauma and finding meaningful employment?

Atoor Tamris is a courageous woman, driven by a passion for improving the wellbeing of others – first by helping young victims of conflict in Iraq, then caring for her elderly parents, and finally assisting refugees in positions just like she was when she arrived in Australia.

In this episode of Breaking Barriers, host Natalie Jones talks to the inspiring minds behind Australia’s first Hotel Etico – a social enterprise hotel that provides work and training for young people with intellectual disabilities. Discover how the team knocks down barriers and changes perceptions, while creating pathways to open employment.
Our guest is Stella Sgambellone, someone who has taken a step back from working in businesses driven by profit and decided she wants to make a real difference. As General Manager of Hotel Etico, Stella found her place, somewhere she can shift community perspective of people with intellectual disabilities.

In this episode of Breaking Barriers, host Natalie Jones finds out how a Melbourne football club’s social impact programs are creating life changing results for young sports enthusiasts looking for work. From a young man with disability receiving a job opportunity within the Club, to another man building valuable work skills to achieve his career goals in the sports industry – it seems sport and employability training are a great match.

Our first guest today is Josh Marshall, a passionate cricket fan from Tasmania, who moved to Melbourne to pursue his dream job in sports administration. Blake Henderson is our second guest, a soccer fan this time, whose determination to be involved in the sport remained strong through devastating life events. How has Melbourne City Football Club assisted these young men on their journeys?

In this episode of Breaking Barriers, host Natalie Jones, discovers the unexpected power of games like Dungeons and Dragons, and how support workers can use roleplay to transform the lives of people living with mental health challenges. How does this unique activity help people to gain confidence and develop interpersonal skills?

Our guest is Paris Conte, a telecommunications business owner turned mental health support worker – whose gaming-related epiphany has led to some amazing results for socially isolated young people.