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Media Release

The Australian Government has committed to enhancing employment opportunities for people with disability, through a ground-breaking project aimed at the tourism industry. Launching in July 2023, the Disability Employment Tourism Local Navigators Pilot aims to revolutionise disability inclusion within the sector. Help Enterprises (HELP), a prominent social enterprise organisation in the disability employment space, has been selected as a “Local Navigator” for this twelve-month initiative.

With secured funding for the Pilot, HELP will spearhead efforts to support small and medium-sized tourism businesses in their recruitment, retention, and promotion of employees with disabilities. Among the twelve organizations across Australia, Help Enterprises will champion workforce participation for individuals with disabilities in the tourism industry.

Denver Fresser, CEO of Help Enterprises, expressed his enthusiasm about the opportunity, stating, “This work will sit alongside our DES business and provide the Department of Social Services with further insight into HELP’s role in disability employment.”

As the designated ‘Local Navigator’ for the Sunshine Coast, Wide Bay, Brisbane North, and Brisbane Inner City regions, Help Enterprises will equip local tourism employers with an ‘Inclusive Employers Field Guide’ containing valuable resources, tools, and information, streamlining the process of recruiting people with disabilities. Additionally, an assessment tool will be utilised to evaluate the current recruitment practices and disability inclusion within these workplaces, enabling HELP to provide a tailored action plan to support these businesses.

Image description: Map highlighting the tourism regions HELP has been allocated as local navigator;
Wide Bay, Sunshine Coast, Brisbane North, and Brisbane Inner City.

Local Navigators will act as the crucial link between tourism businesses, employment service providers, and individuals with disabilities. Their primary objective is facilitating workplace cultural transformation, improving employment practices, and ultimately bolstering employers’ confidence to hire people with disabilities.

Commenting on the initiative, Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth emphasized the role of Local Navigators in addressing barriers to employment for people with disabilities. “Through drawing on their extensive experience and professional networks, Local Navigators will help hundreds of small to medium businesses improve their capability and confidence in supporting employees with disability,” Minister Rishworth stated.

With a long-standing history of fostering relationships with employers, industries, and communities, Help Enterprises is poised to expand its geographic footprint, reaching as far as the Wide Bay region. This opportunity not only opens more doors but also provides valuable insights to enhance service models within its DES business.

“We’re looking forward to taking what we learn from this pilot to further enhance our service models for our DES business,” said Mr. Fresser, expressing his anticipation for the project’s impact.

The Disability Employment Tourism Local Navigators Pilot represents a significant step toward a more inclusive and diverse tourism industry in Australia. By equipping businesses with the necessary tools and support, HELP aims to create sustainable employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities, fostering a culture of inclusivity within the tourism sector.

Program contact:

Daniel Hudson on 0447 552 459 or email [email protected]

For media inquiries, please contact:

Lara Thompson on 0438 801 012 or [email protected]

About Help Enterprises:

HELP Enterprises is a disability social enterprise and not-for-profit organisation that enhances the lifestyle, independence, and ambitions of people with disability.

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