Ellie Stuart hasn't looked back since she took the leap from administrative work to a job in the disability support sector.
The Macleay Valley Support Services coordinator of NDIS support services finds rewards in her work every day.
"It was the best decision I've ever made," Ms Stuart said.
"The most enjoyable part of my work is supporting my clients and helping them achieve their goals on a day-to-day basis.
"I've formed lifelong connections and friendships with them, and they've taught me so much about living with disability, and how it doesn't halt their ability to live independent and meaningful lives."
She encourages others to pursue careers in the disability support sector.
A state government initiative to grow the disability support workforce will help people get a start in the industry.
Apprenticeship Careers Australia, a specialist training division of Business NSW, is set to train and create employment opportunities for 450 people across the North and Mid-North Coast in the care sector as part of the More Jobs More Care program.
The program is a state government initiative to increase participation in the care industry and support the needs of the NDIS participants by creating a trained workforce for providers who are struggling to attract and retain staff.
Apprenticeship Careers Australia will deliver a four-week training program.
The state government, through the More Jobs More Care program, will cover all training costs as well as mandatory NDIS worker screening checks.
The program will provide mentoring and buddy shifts for program participants.
There are upcoming courses in Port Macquarie.
There will also be opportunities for 12-month traineeships at the end of the four-week program.
Apprenticeship Careers Australia general manager Luke Radford said there was a massive need for workers in the sector.
"I think there are some huge opportunities for people on the coast to get into a new sector," he said.
It is estimated up to 30,000 additional NDIS workers will be required in NSW by 2024, according to the federal government's Department of Social Services.
Apprenticeship Careers Australia, in partnership with Yilabara Solutions, will also focus on attracting and supporting more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to sign up for the program.
Business NSW regional manager Kellon Beard said by providing a service that attracted new workers into the industry and guided them through their accreditation and training, they were creating a ready-made workforce for local employers and supporting a more stable disability sector workforce.
For more information on the More Jobs More Care program visit the Apprenticeship Careers Australia website or call 1300 765 155.
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