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A Coogee local has credited TAFE NSW with helping him find his calling for disability services, after completing a personalised career development program for carers. 

28-year-old Chau Au cares for his brother and mother who live with psychosocial disabilities. When faced with uncertainty around his future career path, he enrolled in the TAFE NSW Carer to Career program.

The Carer to Career program provides pathways for carers into further study and employment, through access to career advice, peer support, tailored skill sets, workshops, webinars, and resources. The skills a student gains through their experience as a carer are also recognised, so they can finish their qualification sooner. 

“I was studying education at university last year but began feeling lost and unsure of my future career goals. As a carer you often think about others, not yourself, so the Carer to Career program was hugely beneficial in providing me with career and study advice tailored to my needs,” Mr Au said.

“The challenges and barriers I face as a carer were completely understood, and I was able to take advantage of skill sets to get a feel for the best-suited path.

“I am often juggling different priorities, so the flexibility of studying online and the adjustments provided to me by my teachers were invaluable. 

“Through the program, I not only gained useful skills in peer support and community engagement, but a new level of confidence. I’m now studying the Certificate III in Individual Support (Disability) at TAFE NSW while volunteering at a not-for-profit, and plan to draw on my lived experience as a carer to forge a successful career in disability services.”

Upskilling Carers Program Coordinator at TAFE NSW, Tracy Ellem, said the program is uniquely designed to help those who help others.

“Whether you’re caring for a child, parent, partner, friend, or even a neighbour, balancing your time and energy between connecting with others, gaining experience, studying, and working can be incredibly challenging,” Ms Ellem said.

“The Carer to Career program provides participants with tailored advice, a thorough understanding of the breadth of pathways available to them, along with the support and confidence they need to determine their goals and successfully reach them.” 

To find out more about the Carer to Career program, visit or call 131 601. 

Media contact: Emma Woodward, Communications Specialist,, 0409 618 291