DOUBLEVIEW resident Clint Van Roon wants to turn his woodworking hobby into a viable business and all he needs is a workshop.
A serious car accident in his early 20s changed the course of his life and he now lives with a disability and uses a wheelchair.
“I’ve tried to find jobs and haven’t had much luck; so I thought why not set up a business and do something for myself,” he said.
“My biggest dream is to get off disability allowance and get off Centrelink and be self-sufficient.
“You can’t live on handouts – you’ve got to give yourself a bit of self-pride.”
Due to space restrictions in public housing, Mr Van Roon is unable to expand his business, CJ’s Unique Creations, which specialises in bespoke upcycled woodcraft such as vertical planter boxes and pots.
“I need someone in the community to give me a go so I can really make something of this,” he said. “There is really no practical way; it is so cramped.”
Mr Van Roon said his aim for the project was “zero waste” and used upcycled pallets and environmentally friendly products.
Employment mentor for disability service My Place Janet Parker has been working with Mr Van Roon on the project.
“I’ve been working with Clint for about 18 months. We started looking for jobs; just kept hitting brick walls wherever we went,” she said.
“Probably the greatest problem is a level of low expectation; people just make assumptions that people with a disability are not as capable or less reliable.
“He is such a capable guy and so desperately wanted to be doing something productive; he decided on turning this hobby into a micro-enterprise.”
Ms Parker said someone who could share or provide a workshop space would allow Mr Van Roon to grow the business.