Dusting off history is serving Josh well

Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Like many Year 12 students Josh spent 2020 thinking about what his future would look like and what career path he would take.

This led to Josh registering with EPIC Assist (EPIC) Cairns in June 2020. After discussing Josh’s interests, skills and goals his Employment Consultant, Narelle, suggested gaining paid employment at The Australian Armour and Artillery Museum.

Josh had already been volunteering for the museum for the past 2 years on a fortnightly basis. It was something he enjoyed, so turning his work experience into paid work was a perfect fit.

Narelle and Employment Advisor Trudy approached the museum’s management team and Josh succeeded in getting the job.

Josh has now been working at the museum for over 13 weeks, 2 times a week. His manager, Dennis, has already noticed a big change in Josh.

“We’ve actually seen him develop more in those 13 weeks than in the previous 2 years. He is much more outgoing and confident,” said Dennis.

“Normally you wouldn’t get boo out of Josh. Now if he’s got a question he’ll come up and ask you and he isn’t afraid to ask you, which is good.”

Josh’s new role is in the cleaning and preservation of armoured vehicles and artillery guns. It is a big job as the museum is the biggest of its kind in the southern hemisphere and currently hold 214 tanks, armoured vehicles and artillery guns.

“At the museum, I’m a general busy-body. I’m usually going around the place seeing if any specific vehicles need dusting top to bottom. Otherwise every now and then I have a unique job such as cleaning diesel spills or repainting tyres,” said Josh.

Josh is standing on top of a sandy yellow tank
Josh cleaning one of the 214 tanks, armoured vehicles and artillery guns that are on display at the museum

Josh has really enjoyed his new role and loves how much he is expanding his knowledge.

“I think having a job is a very important thing. It is a learning experience and allows you to learn more about whatever industry you are interested in,” said Josh

“Since I’ve started working here, I’ve learnt a lot about the museum in general. I’ve learnt a lot about storing vehicles. I think I’ve changed a fair bit as well. I understand now what it’s like to do proper work.”

Josh standing in front of a camouflage tank
Josh stands next to his favourite tank in the museum

Even though Josh has gained employment, Narelle and Trudy still stay in contact with Josh and Dennis.

“It’s been brilliant working with the ladies from EPIC. Any questions we’ve had they have come back to us straight away. Any little issues that have arisen we’ve been able to deal with them very quickly,” said Dennis.

“If we have needed any guidance or advice, we can get them on the phone and they also come out and visit regularly just to have a chat to us and have a chat to Josh to see how he is going.”

“We can’t fault the way EPIC has worked with us in any way.”

Josh is looking forward to continuing to work for the museum and has a long-term goal of working at the War Memorial Museum in Canberra.

When asked what he would say to someone thinking of joining EPIC he put it simply:

“I’d tell them to go for it. It has really worked out well for me and I think it would really work out well for anyone else.”

If like Josh, you or someone you know is looking for extra supporting finding long-lasting and meaningful work contact EPIC today.

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