For Heather and Soyo from our Southport Community Centre, one of their passions in life is making culinary creations, which is why the MasterChef Cooking Program is an exciting opportunity. In September, an award-winning local chef invited them to complete work experience at his restaurant.

At Afford Community Centres, we go above and beyond to provide new and exciting opportunities for our clients to have unforgettable experiences and turn their dreams into reality.

“This is a great way for our clients to engage with others, build confidence, independence and gain hands-on experience at an award-winning restaurant,” said Queensland Customer Care Manager, Tamara Dunn.

Tamara was contacted by Head Chef of Rick Shore’s Restaurant, James Brady, who was looking to partner with a disability service provider to offer this unique opportunity. After a successful visit to Southport Hub, Tamara and James decided that the one client per month would attend the restaurant every Monday from 11.00 am to 3.00 pm to work with James and his team.

“Heather is the first client and will be attending for October. Heather said she was nervous to start but she enjoyed the experience of being able to do something on her own without anyone doing it for her or taking over,” continued Tamara.

After talking it over with his mum, Soyo will be attending work experience during November, with his mum is excited about the opportunity.

“Soyo’s mum told me she has never heard her son so excited about something! Soyo may be a shy young man but he is now a very excited young man who can’t wait to attend Rick Shore’s Restaurant in November,” said Tamara.

James was inspired to host these sessions after his mentor at The Sheraton, London, offered a similar experience for those with disability. The act of generosity left a lasting impression on James and now, 10–15 years later, he is sharing that kindness with Afford.

We are so excited to see our clients further develop their passions under the guidance of James.

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