By HARRY CLARKE
AN ORGANISATION which assists vulnerable people across regional Queensland to gain meaningful employment has marked its 10 year anniversary, and an icon of Australian film and comedy was there to help celebrate.
For the past decade Ability Enterprises, a Toowoomba based not-for-profit organisation, has been sourcing consistent work for 480 disadvantaged people such as those living with mental illness, people with disabilities, refugees and Indigenous Australians.
To mark the 10-year milestone award winning actor, director and comedian Shane Jacobson made a surprise guest appearance at Ability Enterprise’s Christmas barbecue, where he shared personal stories of his family life, lockdown and online bullying.
“Let’s try to laugh more, let’s not take life too seriously, make someone smile, sit down and tell them a cracking good joke,” was Jacobson’s main message.
Since 2012 Ability Enterprises has been using its partnerships in the services industry to provide clients with employment in areas such as waste management, specialist cleaning services, manufacturing and recycling.
Over the next few weeks the organisation will formalise a new arrangement with Plastics Recycling to create 45 new jobs while diverting 175,000 tonnes of single use plastics away from landfill.
“Ten years on and Ability Enterprises is going from strength to strength” said Ability Enterprise CEO Tracey Scanlan.
“We currently have 92 staff employed across 11 service provision contracts and we are being recognised, locally and nationally for our commitment to creating a sustainable business model that offers full time employment opportunities to people with a disability.
”The board of directors and management team have been working hard to diversify our Enterprise model, remain relevant and map our future direction.
“An exciting part of that future is Plastics Recycling.”