My name is Sam. I am a lead support with Yooralla.
I work in a house that has six residents with some fairly complex disabilities.
Some of the day to day tasks that we support our customers with are things that we might think are really simple to do on our own, like getting out of bed.
The variety of the supports that we need to provide are huge, there's residential accommodation that I work in, or there's day programs.
There's people who need support to go to the footy. The spectrum of supports in between is huge.
There's a social aspect to our work too. So we have conversations, we have chats where you sit down and have a cup of tea.
From time to time there's always something different going on. There's no two days that end up being the same.
I started in disability support ten years ago. I had recently finished school and started working as a manager in a fast food restaurant.
I applied for the role with no experience whatsoever and then discovered that I actually really liked it and they got me all the training I needed.
For me, the flexibility of the role is a huge draw. I can work virtually any shift I want around the clock. Disability doesn't clock off at 5 p.m. People need those supports at whatever time of the day.
For anyone thinking about working in community services. I would say definitely give it a go. There is no one skill set that will define a good support worker because there's no one disability common to every single person.
The most rewarding experience I've had was when I got to take a customer on a trip to Sydney on the train to visit his grandma, who had never met before. I think it meant the world to him and something that he'd never thought he'd be able to do. It meant that I got to be part of a really significant part of his life.
My job matters because if I don't turn up for work and do my job and no one else can cover it, there's someone who's not going to be getting out of bed. They're not going to be eating food, and they're not going to have good quality of life
Reviewed 29 August 2022