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Unisson Works Independent Lifestyle

Sally is a focused, caring individual who knows what she wants from life. A long-term Unisson client, Sally lives in one of our shared living homes in the Ryde district and works four days a week at Pack Works, part of Unisson’s Supported Employment service.

When the alarm goes off each Tuesday to Friday at 4.30am, Sally begins her preparation for the day at work. This includes dressing, making breakfast and preparing her lunch. Sally maintains a healthy diet which she has developed in conjunction with a dietitian, bringing apple and celery for the morning tea break, and often a sandwich that she can toast at lunchtime or leftovers from her dinner the night before.

At 6.30am, Sally leaves her home and heads to the local bus stop. Sally takes one bus and two trains to work each day and then enjoys a short walk to Unisson’s premises at Thornleigh, ready for an 8 am start.

The first thing Sally does as she arrives at work is to make a good cup of tea and catch up with her colleagues. The team leader outlines the various tasks for the day, which could be as varied as sorting mail, matching cards to labels, writing up Express Post labels by hand, filling showbags or any of the other various jobs that come through Pack Works. Whatever the task, Sally gives it her complete focus and pays attention to all the details. She takes enormous pride in her work, winning an award from Unisson Works for her dedication and diligence. Unisson Works Business Manager, Elke Schreiner, recently commended Sally for mentoring a colleague who completed school at the end of 2021 and had begun his first job at Pack Works. Sally provided assistance and guidance with various tasks, making sure he was comfortable with the requirements of the role.

Sally says that she loves to work at Pack Works. She enjoys the varied tasks and being able to work four days a week – something which she requested and built up over a period of time.

For Sally, work gives her independence and an income so that she can save for the things she enjoys – such as a holiday. Next year Sally is planning to take a cruise with some friends to the Loyalty Islands, off the coast of New Caledonia.

Life at Pack Works is very sociable. At lunch time Sally relaxes, chats to her friends, she might watch a little television in the lunchroom and is often seen locating chairs for her workmates, so that everyone can participate in the discussions or activities.

When not at work, on Mondays, Sally usually heads to the local gym where she uses various exercise equipment to keep fit, including the rowing machine, which is a favourite. She says she like to keep healthy and trim.

In her spare time, Sally enjoys visits to her family or alternatively welcoming them to her home. She loves taking turns to cook dinner for her housemates – a group of five residents who are good friends, sharing a large home. Sometimes she cooks stir fries with vegetables and rice. If there is enough food left over, it might be enjoyed for lunch the next day at work.

The COVID lockdowns of the past couple of years have provided some challenges for Sally as she was prevented from attending work, like many others
in the community, for months at a time. She missed the company of her colleagues, celebrating special milestones with them and the satisfaction which she gets from her job. When the lockdowns finally ended, public transport was considered too much of a health risk and for a time, Sally needed to rely on private transport. Gradually, though, in the ensuing months, she was able to return to her usual travel schedule. Sally says she prefers her independent travel arrangements because she gets more exercise and it’s in keeping with her healthy lifestyle goals.

Sally exercises her right to make her own decisions, with a strong focus on her personal wellbeing and independence, setting some well-researched
personal goals. As a valuable team member at Pack Works, she demonstrates a wonderful caring attitude towards all those around her.

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