Nineteen-year-old Wiremu has been attending Interactionz’ Tattersfield Community Center in Hamilton for four years. Here, Tattersfield’s Goal Facilitator Sarah Gilmore shares how Wiremu’s life has seen positive change since successfully obtaining and maintaining a job at SVS Vet Supplies.
Wiremu began working at SVS Vet supplies three months ago after Interactionz put him in touch with CareerMoves who set up an interview for him. Success at the interview was a great achievement and since then Wiremu has embraced the ‘working man’ role and as a result has gone from strength to strength in both his working and personal life.
“I like learning lots of new things when I’m at my job and working there makes me feel like a man,” says Wiremu. “SVS has really helped me with a lot of life skills.”
Wiremu works 20 hours a week at SVS. He has a boss and supervisor that he reports to and his duties include sweeping the warehouse, dusting the shelves and storage area, recycling, breaking boxes down and stacking pellets. He has recently been given more responsibility and started packing orders. He also has the responsibility of clocking on and off.
Interactionz have worked closely with Wiremu throughout this new chapter in his life, not only in supporting him in his new job, but in helping him to establish goals (both short-term and long- term), which provide him with the motivation to make the most of his opportunity at SVS.
“As my attitude has improved at work I’ve had more interaction with my other workers which I like. My new attitude means I work at fixing the mistakes I make at SVS, and I have changed my attitude to the jobs I don’t like doing, I now think ‘I am being paid to do this job’,” says Wiremu.
Back at Tattersfield (which Wiremu attends in the afternoons) he has inspired others in the knowledge that getting a job is achievable and he regularly gives advice on what is expected of a working person.
“Working has taught him about consequences, and as a result he has developed different dealing strategies, for example if someone starts to annoy him he now ignores them and moves away. Wiremu now takes other things more seriously, such as his singing. He recently learnt a new song, practiced and then auditioned for New Zealand’s Got Talent,” says Sarah.
Wiremu’s relationship with his family has also improved. “They talk to me more respectfully and treat me like an adult. They trust me more and I am now allowed to catch the bus to work by myself and go to more activities,” says Wiremu.
Wiremu has set himself both short-term and long-term goals to help him succeed at his job and in his life in general.
Wiremu gets a weekly score card rating his performance at work, he is consistently getting in the high 80’s and 90’s and most recently got 100%.
“I want to get 100% every week and to get a permanent job at SVS, with longer hours. I want to travel to Dunedin to represent Waikato in basketball at the Special Olympics and I really want to represent New Zealand at the Special Olympics,” explains Wiremu.
Sarah is working together with Wiremu to ensure that he is well supported if his job continues.
“We also need to plan for him not getting the job. This is a reality for all people, so if he isn’t successful it will be a good learning experience for him. Wiremu will of course be devastated, but support will be in place. He will be encouraged to learn from the experience and start looking for another job,” says Sarah.*
*Since this article was written Wiremu has secured a permanent part-time role at SVS. He is really happy about his success and the hard work he has put in.
More information about Tattersfield Community Centre and Interactionz