Ollie Mows a New Path with WDEA Works Swan Hill

For Ollie, finding a path to the right job was a difficult. With the help of WDEA Works Swan Hill and Stephen at Mallee Mowing, Ollie has found a new lease on life.

Ollie’s past difficulties involved drugs and alcohol, which affected his mental health, creating further barriers to finding the right job.

“I’d gone down the wrong path with drugs, alcohol and getting locked up,” said Ollie.

Ollie started with Stephen at Mallee Mowing in November 2019, beginning with a two-month trial before officially signing up in January 2020.

Ollie is very open about his past battles in the hope his story will change someone else’s pathway.

“I hope (my story) reaches others, or just one person, and makes a difference for them,” he said.

Having been supported into his new position by his WDEA Works Swan Hill Employment Consultant Elisha Keep and Stephen from Mallee Mowing, Ollie feels that the right employer makes all the difference.

Elisha says Stephen is a great mentor for Ollie.

“Ollie and Stephen have a great relationship, every time you see them they’re always laughing and joking – they’re fun to be around and their personalities complement each other really well,” she said.

For Ollie, it’s simple.

“The relationship is so important,” he said.

“We have a prospering relationship,” he said, before laughing about his boss Stephen listening in during the interview.

Ollie’s role at Mallee Mowing includes mowing, whippersnipping, pruning, laying turf, gutter cleaning, landscaping, beautifying and yard clean ups . Stephen and Ollie’s excellent working relationship is evident in their efficiency and fun-loving banter.

Stephen is pleased with Ollie’s work.

“I really enjoy having Ollie on the team he’s great at what he does and if I’m not careful I think he’ll take over the business,” he joked.

Ollie’s experience has changed his perspective on work and has allowed him to take his family on holidays and have a steady income. His role at Mallee Mowing has given him direction and has been able to buy a camping trailer and a motorbike.

Ollie feels WDEA’s continuity of care and support has helped him, and the routine and responsibility has helped with his mental health and has given him purpose.

“Work harder, save harder. You have to want to do it, big job, little job, whatever! It’s a new high for me,” he said.

Employment Consultant Elisha feels Ollie and Mallee Mowing is a successful fit.

“Ollie has this bubbly, likeable, contagious personality – we knew that if he found the right opportunity things would really change around for him and his employment with Mallee Mowing is proof of this,” she said.

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  • WDEA Works Employment division incorporates both Disability Employment Services and jobactive.
  • Disability Employment Services
  • jobactive