Tracey finds her passion in hospitality with Allara Learning
Established in 1862, The Fiddler is a modern food and bar precinct offering quality casual dining and entertainment in the Hills.
The Fiddler offers communal dining options as well as smaller, more intimate spaces, amongst its sprawling network of bar and dining areas.
The Fiddler delivers exceptional food, a distinctive beverage menu, and a philosophy of delivering superior service.
Local community support and initiatives are a key part of The Fiddler’s identity.
The Fiddler is owned and operated by Lewis Land Group.
- The Fiddler's website
After leaving school Tracey was unsure of what career path she wanted to pursue. Following a few false starts in other industries she struggled to find employment.
“It was very difficult to find a job” she said. “I was looking everywhere but couldn’t find anything. It was a really hard time and I became very depressed.”
After continually searching with no luck, Tracey’s job assistance provider suggested she enrol in the JobReady program run by Allara Learning at The Fiddler, based on the success of programs previously run at the venue.
The JobReady program is a pre-employment initiative aimed at helping local jobseekers to gain hospitality skills, achieve a nationally recognised qualification and secure employment in the hospitality industry.
Tracey admits she was unsure about the idea of working in hospitality due to her shyness and the challenges presented by her intellectual disability. “I was a bit hesitant before because I was really shy and I dealt with anxiety” she said. Despite this she was determined to find employment so she enrolled herself in the JobReady program, and is very happy she did.
Training was delivered on-site at The Fiddler, where participants received a mix of classroom-based and hands-on instruction from one of Allara Learning’s professional trainers.
The course covered practical skills such as food and drink preparation, and how to carry plates, as well as soft-skills including customer service, communication skills and self-management.
Training on-site allowed Tracey to become more comfortable working in a hospitality setting, as she gained experience in a real work environment, and became familiar with the organisation and its facilities and processes.
It also allowed managers to be involved in the training and development process, and build a relationship with participants to understand their needs and provide appropriate support to help them successfully move into employment.
Training in a small group gives trainers the chance to spend more one-on-one time with students to ensure they can provide additional support to participants where necessary. Tracey highlights how this more personal approach helped her overcome the challenges presented by her disability.
“[My trainer] was incredibly patient and understanding – he supported me with my disability and spent time with me one-on-one when I needed it, giving me that extra support. He was always there to provide guidance,” she says.
Aside from the practical skills she gained, Tracey experienced significant personal growth throughout the program, remarking “I’ve become a very bright, confident person. I’ve really come out of my shell.”
Since commencing her employment Tracey has excelled in her role, becoming an invaluable member of The Fiddler team and sharing the skills she has developed with her co-workers.
“Tracey’s become a leader to her peers with the ability and confidence to pass on the knowledge she’s gained through the program to help train new staff, which is phenomenal growth and development for someone who began the program so shy and reserved,” says Operations Manager, Tani Rosekelly.
Upon completing the program, Tracey achieved a nationally recognised SIT30616 Certificate III in Hospitality and was offered employment at The Fiddler.
While Tracey had never seen herself working in hospitality prior to the program she has now been employed at The Fiddler for over a year and is loving every day at her job.
“I’m so glad I did the course. I’ve been here for a year now and I’m really enjoying it. Every day I’m still learning something new…I go home after each shift thinking “I had a great day.”
Tracey looks forward to progressing her hospitality career and applying her newfound skills throughout different areas of the venue, saying “I definitely see myself staying in hospitality, I don’t see myself going anywhere else. Next, I want to be a bistro host and keep moving up.”
Tracey has truly found her passion in hospitality, commenting “I love interacting with the customers and seeing them have a great time here. We provide them with great food and service, and it’s nice to see them enjoying themselves and having fun. It gives me that warm feeling inside.”