Living with autism, Nathan struggled with anxiety and self-confidence, which made it difficult for him to find or maintain jobs since leaving school.

When he came to BUSY Ability for help through the School Leaver Employment Support (SLES) and Disability Employment Services (DES) programs, Nathan was looking for guidance and keen to find work that suited him.

Despite living with autism, Nathan never let this stand in his way and was an active participant in SLES workshops and in seeking employment. He engaged in work experience with a media company, along with some other industries, but had not found the right fit until recently.

Continuing to support Nathan to build his confidence, his employment consultant put him forward for a picker-packer role with Macro Mike, a vegan protein company with a distribution warehouse based in Burleigh Heads.

The employer, who has a nephew who lives with autism, welcomed Nathan for an interview and trial. Not long after his trial, Nathan was offered regular work of 8 hours per week, which then increased to 12 hours per week after gaining an extra shift.

In the early days of his employment, BUSY Ability supported Nathan with transport to and from work and helped to build his confidence to catch the bus to work. With further encouragement, Nathan was open to biking to work as he lived nearby and BUSY Ability through the School Leaver Employment Support program, provided funding to pay for the bike.

Feedback from Nathan’s new employers is that he is picking things up really well and is always on time and very reliable.

Nathan is happy too and continues to smash goals and work hard in his new job. “I have gained lots of confidence because of BUSY Ability – thanks so much!”

CEO for BUSY Ability, Jason Shield, said, “Starting a new job can be intimidating for anyone, let alone someone living with autism. We are pleased that we were able to find a work environment that suits Nathan and that has helped to build his confidence. The future looks bright for Nathan and through the SLES program, BUSY Ability will continue to support Nathan for up to two more years, ensuring he succeeds in his role and career progression”.

To find out more about our School Leaver Employment Support program, visit:

Nathan is now cycling to work and thriving in his new role as a picker-packer for vegan protein supplement company, Macro Mike.



Michelle Ryan

Ph: 0407 169 029                     


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