27 Jun
Sayed’s story: Never giving up

Sayed’s story: Never giving up

This week we’re sharing a touching story from a man who never gives up. Sayed has turned over a new leaf in life working here at the BRS after a long journey from his hometown in Afghanistan.

Pursuing a better life

I grew up in Kabul, Afghanistan, and studied at a teacher’s training college. After graduation I completed my military service, then returned to work as a language teacher. I tutored in my hometown dialect, Dari, and also in English.

But times were changing. There were no opportunities for teachers and it was hard to make a living. I decided to move to Pakistan and then Iran for better prospects. I had to abandon my teaching background and pick up welding instead.

After 15 years in Iran my sister-in-law helped us migrate to Australia in 2004, in the hope of finding a better life for my family and I.

New life in Australia

In Australia things were different, but I still struggled to find sustainable employment. I worked many different jobs, cleaning or doing farm work, and took on every single role that I could.

But in 2007, I had a terrible accident. This led to the development of a language disability. At this point I was nearing retiring age, and alongside my disability, the chances for sustainable employment grew even smaller. I couldn’t retire or receive enough financial support for my family, so I had to keep going.

Not long afterwards, I found Workpower and met my Employment Consultant, Sara Cuevas. Working with Sara changed everything – she was so kind, supportive, and encouraging, and went out of her way to get me back on track.

Together we focussed on finding work that made use of my handyman skills, and this led to further opportunities in the organisation.

 I met Bill, now Manager of the BRS, and we got along really well. I joined his team working on odd property and maintenance jobs for one year before I got an interview for the BRS.

Back into the workforce

Since August 2016 I’ve had the pleasure and privilege to work at the BRS alongside Bill and a team of great people. I take great pride in my position and what we’ve achieved since we took over management of the site. The BRS is now an efficiently managed, tidy, and safe place.

In particular, I find my role managing the cardboard recycling area very rewarding. The position suits my disability well, it’s fulfilling, and I get the chance to meet and communicate with new people every day.

Working here has totally changed and improved my life.

Now that I have sustainable employment I can fully provide for my family without needing Centrelink. I have no stresses or worries. I love what I do, and hope to keep working for as long as possible!

Being engaged in a position with a positive environment makes me happy and keeps me going.

I am very grateful for the support received from Sara, Bill, and the rest of Workpower. Although no longer my EC, Sara still goes out of the way to help me, and it’s great to be able to feel so supported by others around you.

Our social enterprises create meaningful employment opportunities for people with a range of disabilities. Contact us at 1800 610 665 today to find out more.