Hearth was founded in 2017 and began through the lived experience of myself, as the founder, and my son Tristan who has cerebral palsy.

Our aim is to transform the disability services within the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) through the experience of hundreds of support workers and participants, and strengthen ourselves through deep sector collaborations, including relationships with leading universities.

My wife and I realised that Tristan required specific support to match his needs and so Hearth was founded to provide responsive support, with the understanding that every person with a special need is truly different and unique.

The initial focus of Hearth was recruiting, employing, matching and training support workers. In 2021, our services were extended to incorporate allied health and housing, a decision based on a need in the sector and our participants.

We constantly strive to lead and transform the disability sector and I strongly believe collaborations with leading educational institutions helps us pave that path.

A Swinburne student during his professional placement with Hearth

The first student we took on as part of Work Integrated Learning (WIL) was a go-getter and keen to be employed full time post-placement. The success of this opportunity meant it became a key part of our ongoing recruitment strategy. The type of students attracted to Swinburne align with Hearth’s values and purpose, supporting sustainable success. 

Our first WIL student commenced in recruitment, then progressed to a Junior Relationship Manager role before being promoted to help establish the Hearth north-west division in 2020. 

Another one of the students has recently been promoted to a Deputy Relationship Manager role in the north-west, a very important role leading the support of very complex participants. There are many examples of the ongoing success of the WIL program within Hearth.

  • "Swinburne students bring energy, passion, and a keen desire to learn and grow... ultimately ensures consistent improvement in the participant services."

    Justin Scanlon , CEO, Hearth

Swinburne students bring energy, passion and a keen desire to learn and grow. This builds on Hearth's culture and ultimately ensures consistent improvement in the participant services.

They contribute to helping Hearth's support workers in delivering services and assistance to participants. Our services enable people with a disability to live their best life and give their families the ability to successfully function knowing their loved one is being well-supported.

The collaboration with Swinburne is a win-win. The NDIS is a world-leading system and relatively new, so the partnership enables more future leaders to understand how critical the NDIS is in the lives of people with a disability. A key part of the Hearth's way is deep partnerships and lasting impact, with the Swinburne partnership a key part of this approach.   

Industry should embrace Swinburne’s WIL opportunities – they are set up to benefit organisations and students. We’re certainly keen to continue our partnership and find more ways to collaborate. The Employability team are responsive and extremely professional in what they do, with the proof point being the continued success of the WIL program.

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