Mid adult dad colors with young daughter

Celebrating International Day of People with Disability

The 3rd of December marks the International Day of People with Disability (IDPwD), a day that aims to increase public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability to celebrate their achievements and contributions to society.

The Australian Government has been supporting this important day since 1996, and today countries all around the world come together to celebrate this United Nations sanctioned event. Each year the UN announces a theme, which in 2019 is ‘Promoting the participation of persons with disabilities and their leadership: taking action on the 2030 Development Agenda’. According to the United Nations, this theme promotes the empowerment of persons with disabilities for inclusive, equitable and sustainable development as envisaged in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

IDPwD stories

Claire Mitchelle, who is this year a spokesperson for IDPwD and lives with Down syndrome, has dedicated herself to improving the working lives and job opportunities for those living with disabilities. Despite the fact that there are 4.2 million people in Australia who have disability, less than half of these people aged between 19 and 55 are employed. This is a statistic that Claire, amongst others, is trying to change.

Claire works as an Office Administration Assistant at Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital School in Brisbane, a job she loves and one that is important to her self-worth.

“It’s very important for people with Down syndrome to have a job. Just like anyone else,” Claire says. “I love my job. It’s very important to enjoy what you’re doing, so I feel very lucky. I love being part of a team; I also like to keep busy and to be helpful, as well as meeting new people and making new friends…. My employers are very supportive and encouraging.”

Jane Bauckhaus, Deputy Principal at Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital School, has only good things to say about her employee: “Claire brings a different perspective to work. Her enthusiasm when she comes in each day is like no other. She has a personality and point of view that I know has been of great benefit to the other staff here,” she says.

Working within the disability sector

There are thousands of new job opportunities for those looking to work within the disability sector as a result of the NDIS, which has created 70,000 new jobs in the last three years alone. Furthermore, 70 percent of companies working within the disability sector reported an increased demand for their services last year – with 75 percent expecting that demand to grow. This presents an extremely positive employment outlook.

Work within the disability sector is incredibly varied and can range from roles such as disability support workers, occupational therapists, speech pathologists and other allied health professionals, through to office-based roles such as marketing professionals, community mentors and business development professionals.

Working within the disability sector can provide an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling working life, and is ideal for those who want to make a difference. And with continuous growth comes a wide range of opportunities, making it is a great space in which to advance your skills.

Austra Health is a registered NDIS provider, and is able to source jobs for those looking to work within the disability sector. Contact us today and see how our experienced consultants can help find the right job for you.