Patrick O’Sullivan moved from Brisbane to the Byron Bay area four years ago to be closer to his family.
He found it very hard to get steady employment in the area and had to downsize to make ends meet.
“This was a very tough period in my life. I found it hard especially because of my age – Byron Bay is a young town,” Patrick said.
“So I started taking volunteer positions at Landcare, the Byron Community Centre, Salvo’s etc, just to fill up my time until something came along.”
Needing help to find paid employment in the area, Patrick approached local jobactive provider ETC.
“ETC found me a position in Bangalow where I lived, which was great while it lasted,” he said.
Unfortunately for Patrick, his tenancy lease ended and the only place he could find a home was in Mullumbimby which was two hours away by bus.
“This made it difficult to carry on with that job due to transport. I have a license but don’t have a car and I’m always relying on public transport. So reluctantly, I had to leave that job which wasn’t good for my confidence,” Patrick said.
Patrick was thrilled when his Jobs Advisor Bronwyn called him with news of a suitable job closer to home.
“I managed to get employment pretty quickly in Mullum at the local supermarket. It’s great because I can just walk there. With this new job I can work evenings and weekends because I’m not having to rely on public transport,” he said.
“I feel a lot better for myself now. I was worried I would be out of work for a long time, but I wasn’t.”
Patrick thanked ETC and Bronwyn for helping him during this uncertain time in his life.
“I am very grateful to the team at ETC, they helped me out when I was in a bad way. ETC has been very good for me,” said Patrick.
ETC Jobs Advisor Bronwyn said it was a pleasure to be able to help Patrick.
“It’s great to see the difference in Patrick as he was very stressed about his situation – which is totally understandable with housing affordability and underemployment a big issue in this area,” she said.
“It’s very rewarding to see that we are making such a positive difference in people’s lives.”
Bronwyn’s tips for local job seekers was to be flexible by looking into jobs that you may not have done in the past and to be persistent.
Patrick also had some useful advice to offer unemployed people.
“My advice for other job seekers is to keep positive, seek help when you can and to not give up,” he said.
ETC provides employment and training services in the Byron Bay area. If you need help finding a job, are looking for staff or are interested in up-skilling, then contact ETC on 1800 007 400 or visit www.etcltd.com.au