Situation Snapshot

As a single parent of two, Sally* had limited family or friend support, and was suffering anxiety, PTSD and memory loss as a result of past trauma. At the time of referral to the Accoras ParentsNext program in May 2022, she was 41, her children were two and eleven, and her eldest child was experiencing delayed speech. Sally identifies as Torres Strait Islander, and she had completed Year 12 and a certificate in Hairdressing and Child Care. Unfortunately, she was unable to work in either of these industries due to a back injury.

She was feeling isolated, and hopeless.

Goals & Challenges

Sally wanted to find a suitable playgroup for socialisation for her and the two children, somewhere local and hopefully familiar. However, attending any kind of playgroup at any location would be challenging for all members of the family due to their heightened anxiety. Additionally, Sally’s own mental health meant that initial contact from Accoras’ Case Coordinator required an even more gentle touch in order to build rapport and trust over time.

What Accoras did

Initially, our Case Coordinator invested more time with Sally, building rapport and working towards a strong ongoing relationship. They used narrative therapy - providing positivity, and helping Sally identify her skills and values, while reminding her of the strength she has displayed on her journey.

The Hillcrest Benevolent Society playgroup was identified as a suitable playgroup option, located at our Outreach venue. The Case Coordinator was able to guide Sally through the process, and remained on site as a support for Sally. This made Sally far more comfortable, as she felt familiar and protected.

From that point, Sally started looking at options for study and employment, so Accoras helped her reshape her resume, update the cover letter, and started helping to her prepare for job interviews. She was provided with a Blue Card, with the cost being covered by the Participation Fund, along with repairs to her mobile phone to take and make calls to schedule interviews.

Accoras also linked Sally with immediate mental health support for her anxiety and PTSD with free service Neami National; Head to Health.

The outcome

Sally is now working 1 day per week at a Local Special School after being out of the workforce since 2018. She feels comfortable and safe with her Case Coordinator, and keeps them regularly updated. In general, Sally has more confidence in herself after gaining employment, and is extremely thankful for the support from Accoras.

What she says

Sally has said that if it wasn’t for Accoras assisting with the goal setting, breaking them into smaller chunks, she wouldn’t be where she is today. She’s extremely thankful about now being employed, and excited at the prospect of giving her children and herself a better life.

The Future

The next goal for Sally is to work on maintaining her employment after so long out of the workforce. Accoras will play a vital role in this, by staying in regular contact, and continuing to provide regular support.

Contact Us

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