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Client Success Stories


Success Story – Catherine S

(DVJS Glen Waverley)


Catherine is a loving and devoted single mother who has found her” forever” employment at Brighton Street Early Learning in Richmond.

Catherine is very satisfied with her work place and her day-to-day duties. The childcare centre has recently experienced new management and there has been nothing but positive feedback from Catherine. The previous Management commented that Catherine is one of their most trusted and reliable employees.

Catherine’s love of the Job, children she cares for, and overall work satisfaction has led to her commencing a traineeship to become a qualified childcare worker and is now in her dream job.

Catherine is absolutely kicking goals, she has advised us that her new role has led her to “ A new career, purchasing a new car, and a new life.”

This is great news, and we are super thrilled with Catherine’s Success. 

Catherine Spaulding

 Toilet Paper

Challenge Accepted

Team DVJS to the Rescue

When DVJS Team members Kirah & Jackie spoke to an Employer for the first time, to explore how DVJS could assist with their staffing needs.
The Owner of the business was run off their feet and explained how they could do with additional staff. The only problem was, they needed new staff to start immediately. 
With large orders needing to be filled and sent out to his customers, he had no time to find staff let alone screen them.
Both Kirah & Jackie, asked questions on what type of role he needed to fill and what type of experience was required, during the conversation, it was identified that the Owner didn't just need one new staff member, he needed three. 
At DVJS we pride ourselves on providing great service, not wanting to let the customer down, Kirah& Jackie quickly got to work and called additional team members in, Jen & Emma. With a large data base of Jobseekers with different skill sets, phone calls were made to our Jobseekers to find out if they were suitable to fill the three positions on offer. 
Within hours since first meeting the Owner, team DVJS was able to pre-screen applicants and found three suitable candidates who started that day.
The owner was one happy new employer and very impressed with the level of service provided. It just proves to show why DVJS has maintained such a high reputation as a DES provider of choice not only to Employers but also to our Jobseekers. Due to the efforts above, three people who answered their phone have now found themselves employed.
Well Done Ladies - Great result for the Employer and Jobseekers.

Nicholas (DVJS Moorabbin)

WASH N SHOP (Cheltenham)


Nicholas, on program with DVJS for a few years, initially had the opportunity to work in the Automotive industry, allowing Nicholas to develop a relevant skill set.

Having a love of cars, this was a great starting point. This process also discovered Nicholas’ enthusiasm for the presentation of cars – cleaning, detailing, and making cars look brand new became a passion.

With this passion in mind, DVJS approached local car washing businesses.

Through a direct marketing approach, we engaged with a very supportive employer, “Wash n Shop” where a work trial was conducted.

As a result of the great direction, instruction and patience shown by the team at “Wash n Shop”, Nicholas was offered a position.

Nicholas has settled in extremely well, loves going to work and is now considered a valued team member.

Nicholas…Keep up the excellent work. It is great seeing local business supporting our clients – it is even more important that everyone shows their support to local businesses during these challenging times.


Nicholas Car Wash 

A&B Automotive

Bill & Ann Rolfe

A&B Automotive Remanufacturing

DVJS Cranbourne

They say you are not allowed to list favorites, but if we were, then Bill & Ann Rolfe would be up right up the top. A&B Automotive Remanufacturing is a family run business, they genuinely are wonderful, supportive business and providing Job Seekers are willing to work and work hard, they will give people a chance.

They value loyalty and understand that some of our clients may need extra support to perform the job. They see through any disability and focus on the ability of the person. This was the case with Ali, a refugee without prior work experience and to add to the difficulty, he was deaf. 

When Ali attended interviews with other Employers, his wife would have attend and act as an interpreter as there was none available to translate English from his native country into Auslan. On every occasion given that he could not read or sign in English it was too difficult to offer him a job. Safety was also a big concern in particular the obstacles with communication. 

Bill saw through Ali's disability and together with the team from DVJS a safe working system was developed. Several years on and Ali has progressed through the company, in addition, many of his co-workers have learnt sign language to communicate with him and make him feel part of the team. 

Since Ali first joining A&B, Bill and Ann have placed additional DVJS Clients into their workforce. The benefit of having Job Seekers keen to work and being placed with such supportive Employers is a win win for all parties. 

Bill & Ann's believes "Everybody has potential if someone will give them the opportunity to show it"

A big  thanks to Bill & Ann and the team at A&B Automotive Remanufacturing.
Maddy Story

Maddy (DVJS Narre Warren)


Maddy came on board with DVJS at the Narre Warren office in early 2020. As if 2020 was not hard enough with the turmoil that the pandemic caused, Maddy was also working through her own anxieties as well.

Together, we broke down her barries 1 by 1. With regular appointments and support, even during the harshest lockdowns this country has ever seen – Maddy showed resilience and an eagerness to not let her condition define her.

With little experience to draw on and the encouragement of her consultant, Maddy was offered and accepted an unpaid internship towards the end of the year with a local retailer. During her 3 months there, Maddy proved herself to be a valuable member of the team. This was a huge learning experience for her, and she was able to flourish and really come out of her shell.

The employer was so pleased with Maddy’s performance throughout her internship, she was then offered an ongoing paid position. She has now been employed there for more than 6 months and hopes to continue learning and growing within the position.

Maddy’s story just goes to show that mental health need not define you. With the right attitude and the right supports in place, you can achieve anything you put your mind to.

My Journey from A-B -TODAY


Shane - DVJS Pakenham client

Written by Shane.


Started with joining DVJS Employment Services and was placed in Mel Bray’s hands.

Had not worked for 3 1/2-4 years due to a prolapsed disc problem as no employer wants to take a chance with someone with an ongoing back injury.

Looking back 12 months ago was heading down a dark path with no opportunity to get a job, having medication daily for back pain.  Then a family tragedy was almost the icing on the cake, got to a stage where there was no going forward and lost all care for myself until….Mel came to what I call “My Rescue”.  Finally feeling confident enough to open-up to Mel and admit to what and where I was at (best day of my life)

Without much fuss was I suddenly seeing a counsellor for the depression and anxiety that had set in, which helped somewhat.  But finally, when Mel had convinced me to talk to my doctor and tell him what was really going on and be truthful.  Mel even offered me that she would attend the appointment with the doctor, as I was still in a place where getting back seemed too hard.

Week by week Mel had given me enough confidence to finally admit to myself things had to change.  So, my journey began….

First, getting a resume in order and getting on my bike to start handing them out to any workplace I came across.  Then that black cloud that had followed me for so long was getting left behind slowly.

Mel had pencilled me in for a job she had in mind.  And first week of Dec 2019 was taken down to Cardinia Engineering to meet the then small staff group.

Suddenly I had someone who was willing to give me a chance of a job.  I started out in a cleaner position, so I put my head and heart into doing the best work I could.  Three weeks work before Xmas doing 5 hours a day Mon-Thurs.  This was so good to ease my back problem into work.  I had dropped all medication and set about doing the best I could at cleaning the areas of the factory I was shown.

Three weeks into working at making the factory clean as I could then I find myself being invited to Xmas break up lunch and next thing I was asked to come back early Jan.  From that day I have never looked back, and my life has gone from better to unbelievable.  Better every day.

In the past 10 months of working, I have a new role in the company with a pay rise ,got myself a car, and for the first time in 10 years, my own place and great workmates that I cannot thank enough for getting me to this point in time of my life. 

Hard to believe that 12 months ago was in a place where nobody wants to go.  But my blessing was (DVJS) especially Mel who without her commitment to “fixing me”, I do not want to think of anymore.

Now you cannot take away this smile I have every day I get up to go to work.

I cannot not thank DVJS enough (MEL BRAY) and COLIN COPPINS (Cardinia Engineering group) for steering this lost soul down the right road to recovery.  I have enormous respect for what these two people did to get me here and, in a position, to be able to tell myself “IM PROUD OF MYSELF FINALLY”.

Picture shows Shane with contributions form staff at Cardinia Engineering Group to help set up his new home.


Michael Savva

DVJS There At Every Step of The Way

Michael S - Client DVJS Moorabbin

By: Michael DVJS Client

I came to DVJS with only work experience work history, I had never been to a Disability Employment Service before and did not know what to expect. The service was explained to me and I was happy to be a part of this journey.

I worked with my Case Manager to find out my strengths and my abilities. They helped me create a resume and gave me more and more confidence at each appointment.

Presented with the opportunity for a paid internship at Holmesglen TAFE as a Stores person, I was soon to complete the application with excitement. I had been given interview training in which I went through pre interview questions with my Case Manager and discussed appropriate clothing to wear.

My Case Manager attended the interview with me to make me feel more at ease, it went well, and I was offered a Full-Time position. Super excited!

DVJS Post Placement Officer and my Case Manger keep in contact with me to monitor how I am going at work checking on how I am interacting with others. I feel supported and I am enjoying learning new skills and meeting new people.

"Thank you so much to everyone at DVJS Employment Solutions for their wonderful guidance and support"

Thank You


William Cleaning Up

Pride In His Work

WILLIAM - Client DVJS Oakleigh


By: Cameron Mcleod - Employment Consultant Oakleigh

Having started as a job seeker with DVJS in June 2018, William was keen and ready to work.

With his previous experience at Labouring and factory work, and his love for cars which saw him repairing carburettors, William decided that a cleaning position would be his next challenge.

William soon started cleaning a small office in Moorabbin, with duties such as Vacuuming, window cleaning, and general tidying up. It wasn’t long before the word spread, and William was asked to help out at another location as well as Moorabbin.

Since September last year William is now the office cleaner at the two locations with great success.

Along with his cleaning duties, William also restocks office and amenity consumables, as well as document shredding and rubbish removal.

In his spare time, William is an avid table tennis player, a Hawks fan, and swings the golf clubs when he is able.

All smiles at Lollipops Playland - Carrum Downs

Jennifer - Client DVJS Cranbourne


By: Laurianne Florigny -Operations Manager Cranbourne

Upon completing a Cert 3 in Early Childhood Education and Care, Jennifer returned to DVJS – Cranbourne, seeking assistance to find sustainable employment.

With DVJS assistance and guidance, Jennifer’s resume was updated. DVJS approached Lollipops Playland in Carrum Downs where Jennifer’s resume was presented.

After an initial interview, Jennifer undertook a work trial at Lollipops Playland Carrum Downs as a Customer Service Assistant.

After a successful work trial, Jennifer was offered employment as she demonstrated she had the skills and ability to learn.

Jennifer is a hard-working Mother, who loves being around children, and has proven to be a great fit for the business.

Jennifer’s enthusiasm & bubbly personality resulted in a perfect job match – meaning the Employer and the Employee are Happy & Proud.

Jennifer is very grateful for the support and guidance from DVJS staff at Cranbourne.

Jennifer has proven to be a great asset to Lollipops Playland.

Jennifer Lollipops




Alan is a prime example of what’s possible when you give someone a chance – and why ongoing support for our clients is core to DVJS.

From the moment we met him, Alan was a genuinely nice young man, well spoken, empathic and passionate that everyone in society gets a fair go – but his Asperger’s Syndrome made it so many people never saw beyond his barriers. Alan even believes that some of those people focused on what he couldn’t do, were the very same ones he’d come to for help.

Alan credits DVJS as the first job agency that actually felt like they cared.

Alan was pretty nervous about his job interview, but Chantel McCrae , HR Manager for Colonial First State, was just blown away by how genuinely authentic Alan is.

In his new role Alan feels inspired, he’s making the long trip to work every day in his nice vest and learning, growing and he has a smile on his face going to work.
How many of us can say that?


Stuart was looking for a little help keeping the amazing equipment at Dingley Village Adventure Golf in top condition, so we introduced Stuart to DVJS client Phillipe and together we’ve all hit an ace.

Stuart feels Phillipe has not only become a valuable asset to the team, but someone the entire team can count on no matter the task - even when Bertha the Water Wheel plays up.
So you can be sure staff like Phillipe will be working hard so your friends and family have a great time whenever you visit.


Michael graduated with an IT degree 3 years ago having a distinction average. He is a very intelligent, genuine young man. It has taken him up until recently to commence employment in his chosen career field. By co-incidence he also obtained his driver’s licence. A great achievement for someone never prepared to give up despite so many disappointments.

Michael regularly obtained job interviews but his biggest barrier was to convince prospective employers that he was the right person for the job. DVJS assisted Michael with interview preparation including mock interviews, developed his resume to a professional standard, drafted cover letters and had an open dialogue with his referees.

While it was deflating for Michael to receive so many “no’s” he was constantly reminded that he only needed one “YES”! He now feels “on top of the world and can “hold his head up high” in social situations. He is a perfect example of determination and not giving up. Well done!


When Sharon Smart, the Manager at the Vermont South Community House saw her local community needed help, she decided to do something about it. Sharon had long supported employing people with barriers but in May 2015 she took that support to the next level by transforming one of the rooms at the Vermont South Community House into a social enterprise cafe known as The Cafe House.

The Cafe House has done wonders, providing much needed opportunities for people to enter hospitality while learning and growing in a supportive environment.

Thierry is a professional Chef with years of experience in Europe and someone who makes wonderful cakes and pastries. Thierry was working in commercial kitchens but the fast paced nature of this work was making it difficult for his health. Now at The Cafe House, Thierry has the opportunity to produce his divine cakes and savoury dishes at a pace that he can sustain and not impact his health. Thierry is one of many DVJS clients that have benefited from the support Sharon and the Vermont South Community House staff provide. Thank you from all of us at DVJS!


Steven is a young man of 24 who has had to endure some tough personal problems to get through to where he is right now. He currently lives with his sister and still deeply misses his mum whom he lost only a few short years ago. Steven was pretty close to his mum and she used to join him in many appointments before she got very ill. When Steven’s mum passed away, he was understandably distraught and decided to take a “leave of absence” from job search in order to grieve.

Steven has autism, but much more striking is how keen he is to work and the way natural friendly leads him to befriending the people he meets almost immediately. The young man is a thoughtful person whose outlook of work is that of pride. When he did secure that job at Wholesale Plants Direct as a nursery hand, he was proud and eager to tell his family that he finally secured work and can be of help to them!
He however postponed telling his family the good news for a week just to make sure it was real and it was ongoing. Getting to work and contribute in a way he was proud of was just too good to be true!

When his employer Nigel Read met Steven, he was astounded with the amount of enthusiasm he has for work. In fact Steven tried to do all the hours of his work trial without a break under a 30+ degree heat! Nigel stepped in to make sure Steven didn’t let his enthusiasm get in the way of his well-being, but seeing his work ethic in action there was no doubt in Nigel’s mind that they would hire Steven.

From simply watering the plants to basic weeding, Steven has picked up more than a few skills along the way. This includes potting plants and moving them from the sun to the shade or vice-versa. Steven wants to learn more and Nigel is very keen to teach him.


Ian has completed 3 months employment at Bread Street Bakery, Mont Albert assisting with food preparation and cleaning. This is a great reward for Ian’s persistence to enter open employment at 29 years of age. We also would like to acknowledge the commitment of his employer, David Winter to give not only Ian an opportunity to commence open employment but also David has employed a young man with Down Syndrome for 6 years.

Last year Ian completed a dual Certificate 11 in Hospitality and Food Processing for 6 months at the Vermont South Community Centre. Prior to his course he undertook voluntary work at the Salvation Army Café in Box Hill.

Ian is always reliable, punctual, willing to learn and he greets you with a cheerful smile! This start has been great for not only Ian but also his family who have provided great support to Ian.


Janelle recently commenced 2 jobs! She works one day per week at Ability Works Kew and two half days in open employment at Boccaccio Cellars IGA Balwyn. This is a great achievement for Janelle! As a child she was involved in an accident that left her with an acquired brain injury. Her family were of the belief that she would never be able to work. Janelle had other ideas! Her personality and attention to detail in an unpaid work assessment at the store quickly convinced the staff that she should be offered on-going employment.

Janelle has now adjusted to working life and she has a good balance where she can still engage in her art classes one day per week.

The staff at Boccaccio have been extremely accommodating giving careful consideration to implement training and support for Janelle. Interesting to note that this store has been in business for over 30 years and this is the first time that a DES service has approached them to consider employing a person with a disability.
Janelle can now look forward to establishing her own work career and having a lot more social interaction with newly acquired friendships.

Noami J

Thank You from Naomi J to her Post Placement Consultant

I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for your ongoing support over the last 16 months while I was a client within DVJS. Looking back over the past 16 months, I remember the first day when I walked into DVJS in Dandenong in 2013, I had very little experience within the work industry & to now look and see how far I have come from then until now is a very big change.

You have given me the support that I needed to fulfil the requirements within my casual employment at Ragman's. When I was feeling unconfident you stood by me & gave me the confidence that Yes I can do it. You have spent endless hours with me over the past 16 months addressing all the concerns I had & taking me step by step through them so that they can be resolved.

Words cannot thank you enough for the guidance you have given me & the confidence you have enabled me to gain. I stand here today a different person because of the guidance & support you have given to me.

Once again I would like to take the opportunity to say Thank You.

Christopher B

Integrated Garden and Property Service Pty Ltd

Chris was 17 years old when he first joined DVJS two years ago from Emerson Special School, he is polite young man. Chris was seeking Gardening/ Landscaping employment and he was particularly keen to secure an apprenticeship.

DVJS Employment Solutions has helped Chris obtain a traineeship through DAAWS where he is currently completing his Certificate II in Horticulture Parks & Gardens. DVJS Employment Solutions also marketed on his behalf & was able to obtain work for him in his field of interest as a Trainer Gardener at Integrated Garden & Property Service Pty Ltd.

Chris has been working there for over a year, he is thoroughly enjoying it...

Well Done Chris!!!