The parents of Guillermo Rodriguez, Maria and Vince Rodriguez, are thankful that their son has begun work as a Hewlett Packard Enterprise employee at the Department of Human Services as part of the Dandelion Programme.
Run in conjunction with Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Danish organisation Specialisterne, the programme offers employment to jobseekers on the Autism Spectrum.
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“We found out about it through a very good friend of ours who became aware of the programme and communicated it to us,” Maria explained.
After that we did more research and found more information about how to apply.”
The pair say Guillermo has been able to grow and develop since taking up his new role, and he has improved in many areas of his life.
“Now he is more confident to initiate conversations and tells very proudly to anyone he meets where he works and what he does,” Vince added.
“He also looks forward to going to work every day and he enjoys being busy, so I think that’s important.”
Guillermo, who has a Bachelor Degree in Multimedia with Griffith University, is grateful for what the Dandelion Programme has given him.
He says that thanks to his new role, he now has opportunities moving forward and independence.
“I also have my own desk, my own computer and I work on various projects at any one time. There are also social events happening and I enjoy using Yammer to connect with other colleagues.”
Maria and Vince also said that the Guillermo’s success in the programme has helped their personal lives.
“Before this opportunity we were worried about many aspects of Guillermo’s life and his future,” Maria said.
“We were worried that even with his bachelor degree gaining employment was going to be a big challenge. We were also worried about his chances of becoming independent and developing his social skills,” Vince said.
“With this opportunity we feel he has a much better chance at being successful with other opportunities in the future.
“Since Guillermo started in the Dandelion Programme many of our worries have gone.”
Guillermo is extremely proud of what he has achieved with the programme and offered some advice to people on the Autism Spectrum, who are also looking for work.
“Be brave and be proud of the skills that you have,” he said.
“Talk to your parents or friends about what opportunities might be available to you, and when you apply for jobs make sure you apply for the one that is right for you.
“With help from the people around you, and some confidence, there is nothing you cannot do.”
Hear more from Vince and Maria about how the Dandelion Programme has helped Guillermo.
- Enquiries about the programme can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org