As we close out what has been a tumultuous, uncertain and unprecedented year, it is with great pride that I reflect on all that has been achieved by the organisation over this time to create development and employment opportunities for people with disability.
It has been no small achievement that with a very new executive team, we have ended the year stronger than we started in terms of Purpose and sustainability despite a four to six week shutdown of our retail network.
Apart from weathering the COVID ‘storm’ to date, there have been some key highlights:
- We directly employed 263 people with a disability.
- We provided 231 students with the opportunity to get work experience to assist them in transitioning to the workforce once they leave school.
- We provided development opportunities through employment to 22 employees with disability.
- We helped four of these people to progress to open employment.
- We employed four people with disability into award roles in the business.
- We supported 183 people with individualised community support.
- We granted 37 scholarships to employees and people with disability to help them grow their skills, qualifications or micro businesses.
- We launched our Online retail store providing development opportunities in web management, digital and online skills, photography and visual merchandising.
- We trained a cohort of clients as Baristas and opened our in-house ‘coffee shop’ to provide the opportunity to build skills and confidence.
- We bid for, won and stood up 16 sites in the WA Container Deposit Scheme – Containers for Change.
- We rebranded our organisation as Good Sammy Enterprises and refreshed the brands for all our social enterprises and services, including our retail network.
- We refreshed many of our stores making them more accessible and contemporary.
- We launched new websites for Good Sammy Enterprises and Good Sammy Options.
- We relaunched our new Values and commenced a transformation of our culture to reflect them.
- We diverted 5,701 tonnes of goods from landfill through reuse and resale.
Our success, as always, boils down to the People that work in the business – the Board, the management team and every employee and beyond that, the clients, customers, donors, volunteers and corporate partners.
I would particularly like to acknowledge the ongoing support of the National Disability Insurance Agency, the Departments of Social Services, Department of Communities, Lotterywest and financial and business support from Santos, Shalom House and Wattyl paints. I would also like to acknowledge and thank all our Store Landlords that assisted Good Sammy over a challenging COVID-19 period.
As a proud Agency of the Uniting Church in WA, we pray that with God’s blessings we can continue to grow our impact from this base and see many more people with disability get the opportunity to learn, grow and progress towards and achieve the goals in their employment journey.