31 May 2022

Supporting a pathway to employment

Hunter Water is supporting a program that offers university students with disability a chance to gain vital work experience while studying.

The Australian Network on Disability (AND)’s Stepping Into program is a paid internship scheme that matches talented students with roles in leading Australian businesses.

For Hunter Water, the initiative serves as a talent pipeline that helps to cultivate an inclusive and diverse workplace culture.

Manager Operational Information Shayne Humphreys has welcomed two interns into the Geographic Information System (GIS) team as part of the Stepping Into program.

He said it’s aided the organisation’s work in promoting inclusion and diversity and reinforced its reputation as an inclusive employer.

“At Hunter Water, we are driving a values-based culture to create and support an engaged and productive workforce.

“Stepping Into is a great program to be involved in. They are bright young people who just need a step up into working life sometimes.
Shayne Humphreys, Manager Operational Information

“One of our interns was a nice young man from Wollongong who travelled for five hours to get here by train to work two days a week for 10 weeks.

“He has now completed an Environmental Science degree at the University of Wollongong and works with the Local Land Services to improve the sustainability of vegetation.

“It was wonderful to see the look on his face when he was offered a 12-month contract after his internship with us.

“This program is not about what we can get out of it, it’s about trying to give the best opportunity for someone to gain employment,” said Mr Humphreys.

Hunter Water’s current intern travels from the Blue Mountains every Tuesday and spends two days in the Honeysuckle office, while he also works from home one day a week.

Apart from its support of Stepping Into, Hunter Water also participated in the Diversity Council of Australia’s Inclusion@Work – a national survey of more than 3,000 workers – in 2021.

The organisation qualified for the 2021/22 ‘Inclusive Employer’ title after exceeding the national benchmark in all four categories.

In more positive news, Hunter Water is continuing its commitment to improve the lives of its people, customers and the community by releasing its second Inclusion and Diversity Strategy.

Visit the Inclusion and Diversity page for more information.