JewishCare J-Jobs program funded by JCA The Choice Foundation partners with Montefiore

June 2, 2022 by Community newsdesk
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In a true win for community collaboration, the J-Jobs Program through JewishCare NSW, that facilitates customised employment for young adults in our community with intellectual disability has candidate Michael Karseboom start his job as a kitchen hand at Montefiore in Randwick.

Michael Karseboom

After more than 12 months of planning, preparing and some delays due to Covid, Michael began his career. Montefiore serves over 500 meals a week, and Michael’s job is crucial to ensuring that fresh salad is prepared and portioned for every meal. All of Michael’s tasks have been customised according to his skills and abilities, and he is being supported for the next 6-8 weeks while he learns the routines and requirements of his role. Montefiore has made all reasonable adjustments to ensure Michael settles in well and succeeds. These include starting at 9:30am to accommodate his travel time, altering the uniform so Michael can change easily when he gets to work, and allowing him regular short breaks to ensure he keeps his energy levels up.

From the moment Michael arrived, he was welcomed by the Director of Catering and the Head Chef and made to feel a valued member of their team. He was given his own uniform, locker and staff access card, before being shown to his workstation in the prep room of the kitchen, where his supervisor introduced him to his new colleagues. With the help of a task list and a photo journal of him doing each task (prepared by J-Jobs), Michael can carry out all his duties with excellence. His colleagues greet him warmly when he arrives, and he joins them for a tea break in the staff room each morning.

Getting to and from work requires a huge commitment as Michael travels 1.5 hours each day by train and bus to get to work, and after his 4-hour shift, he travels the same distance home. J-Jobs program manager Shelana Silver said, “When I asked him if it was worth it, he told me that for 10 years he has wanted to be a kitchen hand, and no one has ever given him the opportunity, until now. He feels valued and part of an important team. He uses his time on the train and bus to read, listen to music and he snacks before work starts.”

“We acknowledge Montefiore and thank them for their support of the J-Jobs Program, and The Choice Foundation for making it possible to change lives”, JewishCare CEO Gary Groves concluded.

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