At the start of 2020, before the madness of COVID-19 kicked in, we had the pleasure of interviewing our participant Gabby. She’s been with Mai-Wel for 7 years and is kept busy by engaging in various services across the organisation; Life FUNdamentals, Creative Arts, Leisure Links, Get Started and Disability Employment Services with Mai-Wel LabourForce Solutions (MWLFS).

Gabby’s introduction to Mai-Wel was with Get Started, MWLFS’ school to work transition service, that she participated in while completing Year 11 at Maitland High School. Each Friday of the school term, Gabby attended Get Started to participate in a range of activities aimed to enhance her skills and capacity for working life after school. When Gabby graduated from Get Started in 2015 it was just the beginning of her Mai-Wel journey.

Gabby loves visiting The Hub where she participates in a range of fun and exciting activities with Life FUNdamentals and Creative Arts. The activities she enjoys most are archery, fitness with Adam Prowse Personal Training, tenpin bowling, gardening at Purple Pear Farm and tie-dying fabrics.
With Mai-Wel Creative Arts, Gabby is learning to play drums and honing her painting skills. She has specifically enjoyed working on her portrait of Taylor Swift with Mentor, Ricky.

Most of all, Gabby enjoys the team work and group outings that she experiences with Leisure Links. Last year, she went to Brisbane with friends and visited Australia Zoo, on another trip she saw her favourite artist Taylor Swift live in concert!

After graduating Get Started, Gabby continued to work with MWLFS with a goal to find meaningful employment. In February 2016 she began working at Seraphine Café at Maitland Art Gallery twice a week where she helps out at the busy cafe, making cupcakes, folding napkins, setting tables and refilling bottled water, and so much more.

If you haven’t already, you might now spot photos of Gabby on-the-job in our MWLFS television commercial! Click here to watch it.

In her personal life, Gabby loves to dance and garden. She attends a dance studio in Mayfield where she learns hip-hop once a week and gets to show off her gardening skills at Purple Pear Farm (with Life FUNdamentals) and at home where she lives with her Mum, Dad and sister Laura. She also has a sister named Emily, who is now married. Gabby had an incredible time at her wedding, particularly on the dance floor.

Thanks to Beyond Bank  for partnering with Mai-Wel for the delivery of Get Started in 2019/20.