Establishing a 'micro enterprise' is one way for people with a disability to get their foot in the door of the world of business, while maintaining a strong foothold in their local community.
Michael Mooney is a micro enterprise businesses owner, and the power of community and personal connection is at the very heart of his business 'Greens 2U'.
As someone who struggled to find employment, Mr Mooney discovered that establishing a micro enterprise was a career option possible for people with disabilities, and could see a new future for himself.
He loved the outdoors, had studied horticulture, and had a big north facing front yard, the perfect spot for a market garden.
With the support of his local Lions club, his overgrown front yard was cleared and had its soil turned over. Four years later, Mr Mooney is on a first name basis with his customers, delivering freshly picked organic vegetables for sale.
His small business is supported by an Enterprise Management Group who bring backgrounds in horticulture, business and accounting, and help to make business and recruitment decisions.
As part of a partnership with the Community Living Project, Mr Mooney will be presenting at a workshop to be held in Port Elliot on Wednesday, October 13, where he will share his experience, along with many other examples from creative and highly valued micro enterprise owners.
Families, people with disabilities and their allies can get involved with a workshop session to start to explore the possibilities available for themselves.
"We try to meet once a month to talk through ideas and find solutions to problems. These people give freely of their time," Mr Mooney said.
NDIS funding supports a personal assistant to support Mr Mooney in his workdays and he said he was proud of how he has been able to create a work routine, and has built new confidence by talking with customers and people in the community.
Two sessions will be held on October 13 at Bucklands Community at 650 Port Elliot Road, Port Elliot.
The first session is from 12pm to 2.30pm and the second is from 6pm to 8pm.
People who should attend are those seeking an alternative to ADE and DES services as the only available work option, and those who are leaving school and are interested in a highly individual and fulfilling opportunity to contribute, and to be included in the economic life of their community.
The sessions introduce 'micro enterprise' and explore the significance of having valued roles and contributing to the community, the importance of work in life, the positive change in people's lives from owning an enterprise, eExamples of existing Enterprise Owners, and how NDIS funding can support this option.
Bookings for both workshops can be made online, via www.communitlivingproject.org.au or by phone on: 08 8384 7866.
The sessions are free but tickets must be booked.