Employment Buddy

Employment Buddy

Can you provide 4 hours of work experience to a young adult with disability?

Young people, aged 15 to 24, have the chance to get the skills and job experience they need to better understand their desired career path through the Employment Buddy Program (EBP). Your organisation can be a part of this by hosting a 4-hour work experience placement.

EBP's Overview

Utilising supported, facilitated workshops, the candidates undertake a twelve week skills-based program including two, four-hour, ‘Buddy’ hosted work experience placements in a role(s) that they hope to pursue further as a career.

As part of the program an organisation will receive training and financial contributions to support the young person with disability to gain valuable experience as a member of the workforce during the four hour work experience placement.

Find Out More

Prospective organisations:  Katie Williams, on 0418 363 483 or katie.williams@risenetwork.com.au
Prospective candidates:  Lukas Murphy, on 0460 022 058 or lukas@essentialpersonnel.org.au

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EBP's Benefits

Benefits for the participating organisational employers include:

  • Increased disability and inclusion awareness.
  • Build the organisation’s reputation and image within the community.
  • Reflect the community in which staff and customers live.
  • Be acknowledged across Western Australia as an inclusive organisation.

Employment Buddy Program Testimonial

Employment Buddy Program Participant

Ryley shares his experience with the Employment Buddy Program. 


Employment Buddy FAQs

In order to give the young person the opportunity to experience supported employment and gain insight into specific roles and responsibilities while in the workplace, organisations will be asked to nominate a workplace mentor (Buddy) who will work alongside the young person during the four-hour work experience placement.

We will provide the organisation's buddy a free online eLearning course if they want to learn more about disability awareness, advocacy, and mentoring.

It is widely acknowledged that employment is linked to economic security that ultimately affects a person’s standard of living and overall physical, and mental wellbeing. At the end of the three-month program, the young people will graduate with improved job readiness and employment related skills to support their career aspirations.

It is hoped that participating organisations will receive a positive experience of providing a workplace opportunity for an engaged and motivated young person and have an increased willingness and capacity to employ these or further young people within their organisation.

The EBP is a twelve week, eight hour a week program designed to give young people aged 15–24 employability and job skills, and provide them with an opportunity to experience employment in a supportive environment.

At the penultimate stage of the 12 week program there will be an individual Buddy hosted work experience placement with up to two participating employer organisations, who will offer a four hour work placement opportunity (or more if they wish).

Each young person enters the program with their own dreams and career aspirations. As part of the process, they will work with the Case Manager, Trainer & Co-Ordinator to facilitate what, and where, they would like their ‘dream job’ placement to be.

Armed with this knowledge, we will then approach employers within that sector or industry to discuss the opportunity to host the young person for a 4 hour placement. For many, this will be their first foray into the employment market and their assigned ‘Buddy’ will be someone who can provide hands-on experience of the role the young person aspires to.  

We will be able to provide the employer with some brief details of the young person who is interested in their organisation however, unfortunately, the employers are not able to choose a candidate for placement.

This is a joint initiative between Rise and Essential Personnel. Together we have identified the 15–24-year-old cohort for the program due to their being more than three times as likely as those aged 25-67 to be unemployed (25% vs 7.9%) (AIHW 2020).

Rise is a large organisation that delivers aged care, disability, mental health, and youth services to over 5,000 West Australians. Established in 1983, Rise currently works with over 300 young people with disabilities and has extensive knowledge of the barriers that young people face in gaining employment.

Essential Personnel has been providing disability employment services for over 34 years for a range of people with disability. They will utilise their experience and expertise to recruit candidates into the program by using established referral systems, while also targeting current young people who work with Rise and other disability organisations.

Find out more:

Thank You to all the participating organisations in 2023

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