Traineeship to CoS team member; Dan’s career journey at Early Links


By Alex Malam

Early Intervention Specialist Teacher


Daniel joined our Early Links team in 2021 as a Community Services Trainee. He came to us after some time abroad, where he had completed university studies and gained valuable experience across a range of settings. Dan had a degree but, like many new grads, wasn’t quite sure what he wanted to do with it. He was finding it tricky to get that valuable on-the-ground experience often needed to join the community service sector.

Dan decided to give our community services traineeship a crack. He has now graduated and landed himself a flashy role in our Support Coordination Team. We asked Dan about his experience, what he learned along the way, and his future goals.

Why did you decide to start a community services traineeship?

I decided to start this traineeship due to the overall flexibility of it. I really wanted to join the health and disability industry; however I wasn’t sure what specific type of role I was after. By taking on a traineeship, I was able to learn about the different pathways I could take. I learnt about the range of jobs available in the disability sector and discovered how my qualifications and employment goals could transfer into a career.

Do you have any advice for someone who might be considering a traineeship?

My advice would be to just go for it. The possibilities with a traineeship are endless, and the community services traineeship in particular is a position where you can learn a lot about the ins and outs of the industry. I definitely don’t regret any part of it, and I met some fantastic people along the way.

What is your favourite part about your job?

The impact you can have on a client’s life was one of my favourite parts and the friendships I have formed in the role. The clients I worked closely with at Early Links would be so excited when they saw you turn up to their front door and take them out for the day. The relationship between a support worker and a client can have such a positive impact on their lives. That couple of hours you take them out for can bring them massive amounts of joy.

Playgroup Team

Dan at Playgroup

How did you transition from completing your traineeship to your current CoS team role?

When I started at Early Links, I was told that the possibilities post traineeship could be endless if I was willing to keep an open mind and put my hand up to try new things. When completing my traineeship, I kept my options open by developing relationships and communicating with other sectors of the organisation.

I put my hand up for opportunities as they arose and had the chance to learn about the workings of all different roles in the business. I was very interested in CoS work, so I spent a lot of time in their office and shadowed many home visits and meetings. Due to my experience with the traineeship, I was offered a job, and the transition was seamless due to my understanding and knowledge of the role.

The CoS team are all lovely people, and they have made the transition super easy. Everyone is available if you have a question and there is a great energy about the whole place.

What’s next?

I’m going to keep building my experience and understanding of the CoS role and how to positively impact individuals’ lives. Early Links have kindly offered to provide me with another study option of a Certificate IV in Mental Health, which I am going to complete. I am always eager to keep studying to learn more about the industry.

Early Links offers a wide range of employment and study opportunities for those looking for a career change, seeking some on-the-ground experience or meaningful work. If this sounds like you, check out our vacancies and apply today for one of our exciting traineeships. Just like Dan, you might find that it is just the start of an exciting new adventure!

Get In Touch

Please complete the form below to contact Early Links. Our friendly team will be very happy to assist you.

44 Bulwer Street, Maitland, NSW 2320

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