Caterina’s story of connection and confidence

22 April 2019

Caterina’s story of connection and confidence

As part of our commitment to increasing awareness about disability employment services in Australia we have launched “Change the Story”, an online film festival featuring seven short films that highlight the challenges of finding work when you have a disability. By showing the human stories behind the statistics, we hope to challenge the stereotypes around disability employment and inspire true change.

Introducing Caterina

In this film we meet Caterina. Caterina’s story is one of self-discovery, she teaches us that you can’t let one moment in time control how you live the rest of your life. Caterina has made her way through adversity, into a place of happiness, while building supportive relationships which have helped her find success.

I used to be a very shy person that didn’t want to talk to anyone, but now I’ve really opened up and I talk to everyone.

– Caterina

Working through anxiety

Experiencing anxiety and panic attacks, Caterina struggled to find work. After being unemployed for 18 months, she connected with her local CoAct Service Partner, MTC, through our Can Van initiative. From there, she was able to find the support she needed to build her confidence and find work. Caterina is now employed at Nonabel transport, as a driver for people with disability, and she couldn’t be happier. She loves getting up and going to work.

In the future I’ll be really happy if I’ve still got this job. I’m so proud of myself that I’m doing this.

– Caterina

Caterina’s employer is also thrilled to have her on board, remarking “Caterina’s been great. She’s a really bubbly, lovely lady. She puts the clients before herself, she makes a lot of their trips enjoyable”. – Fatima, Director, Nonabel.

What employment means for people with disability

Caterina’s story shows us how important finding sustainable employment can be for those living with disability. It has had a positive flow-on effect for Caterina in so many ways.

Prior to finding work, Caterina was isolated and her confidence had taken a hit. She is now able to financially contribute to her family for the first time in a long time, has made amazing new friendships and is contributing to her community in a really important way. Finding success at work has also given her the confidence to complete first aid training.

Watch Caterina’s video here.

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