Laura Bray is a passionate and valuable member of the team at IMPACT Community Services.

Laura’s role in Transition to Work (TtW) at IMPACT is to lead a small team of Youth Coaches to deliver intensive case management which enables connection for its participants and opens up local opportunities in employment and education for them.

“Our aim in TtW is to create a positive experience for young people seeking support with empathy and no judgement,” Laura said.

“With mainstream employment services constantly evolving, TtW is a crucial service for kids who need extra one-on-one assistance, and would be left without anywhere else to receive support, in some cases.

“I have always ensured my team are equipped to deliver the best possible service for the local community.”

Laura said “two things” motivated her.

“Success motivates me,” she said.

“I handle TtW as if it were my own business. I invest time and the best strategies to ensure that our participants are receiving quality service and value for time.

“I am a naturally determined individual. In 2016 the TtW contract was new, and because of this I was risk-averse to moving out of my old role as Employment Consultant in jobactive to take on the Team Leader role.

“But, to use an apt cliché, I threw caution to the wind, and took a chance. And wow; I am so pleased with what I have achieved professionally.

“The other thing that motivates me is empowering young people.

“With servicing limited to 12 months in TtW, every appointment, every conversation must be meaningful to make progress.

“Seeing a young person make positive steps towards creating a better future for themselves is rewarding, whether it’s getting their learners or provisional licence, starting (and finishing) a course, finding their first job, or realising their goals are achievable.

“It starts with one step, with me and my team standing alongside them.”

Laura has been in the employment services industry since 2007, making the change from working in large hospitals in Brisbane in medical imaging and the Gold Coast in pharmacy oncology.

She moved into an administrative role at Sarina Russo Job Access before moving on to Max Employment as an employment consultant.

Her family wanted a slower pace they knew they couldn’t find on the Gold Coast and relocated to Bundaberg in 2011, where she continued working in employment services with Employment Services Queensland, Mission Australia and now IMPACT, for just over seven years.

“The things I love about IMPACT have grown over time,” she said.

“I initially liked the work-life balance; the 9-day fortnight was certainly a bonus.

“I love that the executive team lead by example – do as I do, not as I say.

“I look to Tanya O’Shea and Paea Ruka for leadership direction. Even though I’ve now been in a leadership role for four years, I’ve still got a lot to learn, and am comforted to know that when I need advice, it’s coming from the right place.

“IMPACT has an open-door policy, from senior executives all the way down. No one is too busy for a chat when needed. We all seem to put our colleagues first, which, when you think about it, is beautiful, and doesn’t happen everywhere you work.

“I’m also pleased that our new values include being passionate, which I support wholeheartedly.

“How can someone be in the industry of genuinely helping people in need when they don’t believe the impact they are making is worth it?”

This profile is part of our Women of IMPACT series. Each day during Queensland Women’s Week we share the story of one of our amazing female team members whose work helps make such a big difference in the lives of so many in the Bundaberg and Burnett regions.