Some people are lucky enough to discover their passion from an early age and know exactly what they want to do when they grow up.
For William Seymour (Will) he always knew that he wanted to work outdoors with animals.
“I am more of an outdoor person. I’m really into fishing and hunting. I have been outdoors my whole life,” said Will.
To help him make that dream become a reality he began volunteering at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures (Hartley’s) in Cairns.
Hartley’s is a wildlife sanctuary and ecotours park where people come to learn, engage, and be entertained by a variety of wildlife animals – the perfect fit for Will.
When Will finished school he wanted to find paid work so his mum suggested that he get in contact with EPIC Assist (EPIC) to access extra support finding employment.
Employment Consultant Narelle and Employment Advisor Trudy helped Will negotiate and transition from volunteering at Hartley’s to securing a paid position at the park.
“EPIC is a really good choice because they can help you achieve your goals and go further in life,” said Will.
Both Trudy, Narelle, and Will were all incredibly excited when they found out he had been accepted for the job.
“I felt really good about getting a job here. I have been coming to Hartley’s since I was a little kid – loved coming here – and now I have got a job here. Can’t ask for anything better than that.”
Will’s day-to-day work is very hands-on and varies from cleaning enclosures, prepping food for the animals, and helping with crocodile and reptile shows.
“My favourite part of my job is getting to hang out with my boss, Drew, and do croc shows with him.”
Crocodile and Wildlife Manager, Drew has noticed a big change in Will since he first started at the park both professionally and personally.
“When Will first started he was buck wild. But now Will has reached a point where he will come in without my supervision and he will achieve all his work goals. He has become a useful employee,” said Drew.
“Will really enjoys coming here. I think he has even improved outside of work because of being here. He has matured and developed which is rewarding.”
Drew and the team at Hartley’s have always made it a priority to support people with disability and know that diverse hiring can have both a positive effect on the individual and the business.
“I’ve always tried to give people who may struggle a go, whether that’s with a disability or they socially struggle or just maybe a bit different. It can be both rewarding and challenging but Will deserves a chance and an opportunity at employment.”
For Will having meaningful employment is incredibly important to him, and working in a place where he feels appreciated makes all the difference.
“The team at Hartley’s are really good. I get along with them really well. I see my team like family,” said Will.
“Work is important to me because it gets me out of the house, and I make decent money that I can put towards my goals. Overall, I’ve got a better lifestyle now.”
If like Will you are looking for a meaningful job in an industry you are passionate about, get in contact with EPIC today. We can help you find a role you love.