Employment Plus is proud of the holistic service it provides as part of The Salvation Army (TSA) and that our partnership enables us to help participants with more than finding a job.

While the organisation is always happy to help individuals on a one-to-one basis, sometimes a group setting can provide a more informal, relaxed environment – where a wide amount of information can be shared.

One such example of this is the Community Connect space held every Thursday from 12 – 3pm at The Salvation Army Employment Plus in Queanbeyan

Managed by The Salvation Army’s Community of Hope Leader, Joanne Paull, the session is a ‘pressure free’ drop in space where job seekers and members of the community can get access and support across a range of areas.

“We sort of set the room up in a café style, and anyone’s welcome in for a chat, a cuppa with no questions asked. Usually, we see about 20-25 people a week.

“We have a list of rotating support services coming from both TSA and beyond.

“TSA services include Doorways – our case management support services, Moneycare – our financial counseling service, No Interest Loans team and it’s a time we can fulfill Sal Card requests for those who have indicated they need some emergency financial relief. We also have food hampers at the ready and our Employment Plus Chaplain is always happy to lend an ear and impart good advice.

“External partners that visit include Gamble Aware, Disability advocates, ADACAS – an aged care navigator and advocacy group, and Oz Harvest who bring great nutritious staples like fresh fruit, veggies, bread and eggs. We often have warm socks, beanies, gloves and jackets that have been donated through the church.

Joanne says In the future TSA hopes to add Housing and Recovery experts to help visitors with finding good accommodation and staying sober, well and healthy.

“Job seekers and community members can use whatever range of services apply to them and for anyone feeling a bit lonely this is also a great connection point. We’ve gotten to know a few people along the way and it’s good to be able to check in to see how they are going.

“We sit down and talk about what their needs are in a deeper way but in a more relaxed way that is not seen as transactional – nothing to do with job seeking requirements.

Naturally, the Employment Plus team is there too to help with that side of things.”