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Workbridge, Where abilities equal employment

Daniel already knows the drill

North Shore Times, 23 October 2007

By Michelle Lotter

 

A special 18-year-old has been keeping his colleagues on their toes since he started work at a dental supplies company.

Daniel Beverwijk has been making a much-appreciated contribution to his new workplace Henry Schein.

Daniel, who has dyspraxia, got the warehouse job after the company contacted Workbridge, a non-profit organisation which provides vocational and in-work support services for people with disabilities.

Dyspraxia is a disorder which can affect a person's physical, intellectual, emotional, social, language and sensory development.

"We don't get enough people ringing, asking us to find people for work." Workbridge North Shore employment consultant Katy Hetherington says.

She says Daniel is the right person for the job, and he agrees.

"They're great people to work with, a nice company to work with, but working with Rhys is a problem," he laughs.

Henry Schein warehouse manager Rhys Timo doesn't seem to mind copping a bit of a cheek from time to time when working with Daniel.

Mr Timo jokes that he values Daniel for his fine coffee making skills.

Daniel says he has learned a lot about dentistry since he started work about a month ago, but he jokes that a dislike for going to the dentist means he has no desire to go any further in the industry.

His mother Patsy Beverwijk says Daniel's dyspraxia is triggered earlier than most so he needs a job with a bit of variety to keep him interested.

Daniel's love of computers is being catered for with the opportunity for him to gain computer skills as he progresses, Henry Schein chief executive Garth Bradford says.

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