Cruising Brings Confidence to Stephen

When it comes to positive outcomes, Stephen is a shining example of the impact our services can have in enhancing customers’ lives. As an Avegates customer, Stephen experienced a Whitsundays cruise that he believes really helped him to come out of his shell. In the past, Stephen says he was fearful of new situations and didn’t like night time.

“On my first Avegates trip the support workers made me feel really safe and encouraged me to try new things. They were so nice to me and they were even a little cheeky too – just like me,” he smiled. “I got to know a lot of new people during the cruise, but my favourite part was the dancers! I love dancing, my moves are just like Michael Jackson, and very sharp.”

Stephen’s parents, who are so proud of the positive impact the Avegates program has had on his life, expressed how important it is, as parents, to trust the Disability Support Workers. 

“We know we can trust Stephen when he is with the Avegates team (Shay, Lachie and Troy) and the great bunch of other people who go as well. It’s a great opportunity for him to make friends,” said Joan, Stephen’s mother. “We’re just so proud of Stephen and how willing to engage he is as he continues to grow in confidence and develop. As parents without any other family here in Australia, Stephen’s future well-being is really important. The more people in his life, the better.”

Stephen’s growth in confidence and skills interacting with new people, has also helped Stephen with his employment at the Monte Lupo Gallery and Café in Banyo where he has worked as a supported employee since September for two days per week.

“The Avegates experiences have really helped me at the café too. If I didn’t work here and learn new skills I would be sitting at home all day. I get a chance to get out of the house and learn new things,” he said. 

Now, Stephen has his sights set on more experiences through travel. “I’ll be attending another holiday with Avegates on the Australia Day Cruise  to Sydney – I can’t wait!” he said. “I never get scared anymore, I am really confident.”

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