President’s Note: I wanted to share Kausar’s story of accessibility, equality and inclusion. She highlights her own challenges, achievements and struggles, whilst contributing to the welfare and advocacy for people with disability. This makes us appreciate the approach people take to their work and the value they bring to the work.
Growing up in a family of three in the beautiful island of Mauritius, at the age of 2, Kausar suffered from encephalitis and lost all mobility to walk, sit and speak. With several years of physio and speech therapy, Kausar got control over her sitting and around 90% of her speech. She was also able to stand using the support of a walking frame. Kausar started school at the age of 5 where she progressed successfully. She has not let her disability be a barrier to her normal daily living. She is a real fighter. Finishing year 12, she joined Mauritius Institute of Training and Development as an Administration Officer and Executive Assistant to the CEO.
Kausar has been a dedicated employee with good attitude, always punctual, very efficient in whatever she touches. She was reporting to both the divisional manager of Corporate Affairs and the CEO. She had great tactful solving skills. In all she was a very good asset to the organisation and helped in the smooth running of my department. The barriers she had was the roads which were not accessible, so she was not able to go anywhere except to work and back home.
After 8 years of service at MITD, Kausar decided to move to Melbourne, in 2011 where she would pursue her Bachelor of Business (Human Resources Management). Arriving in Australia, her family bought her a mobility scooter and Kausar became fully independent. Shortly after few months, she met the love of her life, Lazar. The two have been together ever since. She graduated in October 2014 and made her whole family and partner proud. Her partner has been of constant help and support in all aspects of her life.
Between 2014 to 2019, she did not have work rights, so she helped her partner with Mindfulness Awareness. They got married in May 2016 and continued their life together. After promoting Mindfulness in Sydney and Brisbane, they moved back to Melbourne. Kausar then took on some humanitarian volunteer jobs. She started to volunteer for 6 months for a Migration Agent, then joined Red Cross in May 2018 where she was a Recruitment and Administration Volunteer in the Emergency department. In November 2018, she moved to the HR department as a Disability Champion. While undertaking 2 days a week volunteer in Red Cross, she also joined Australian HR Institute where she volunteered another two days a week. Her volunteering had helped her to develop new HR skills and knowledge.
On the 17 January 2019, she was finally granted her full work rights visa. She joined Dual Foods Pty Ltd in February on a one-month contract as an Administration Officer. This was her first paid job. Following this contract, and after few months of constant rejections, she landed into a 6 week long service leave contract at Melbourne Airport. Her latest work included working as a team to assist the People and Experience team at Melbourne Airport to improve accessibility for travellers with disability. She conducted general tour of the whole airport to compile the different changes needed to make the accessibility of both travellers and employees better. She prepared a report on workplace amendments to support employees and travellers with disabilities, that was well received by Melbourne Airport executives.
Kausar is part of the UN and was on the board of Training and Employment of Disabled Persons Board back in Mauritius where she contributed a lot to the welfare and advocacy for people with disability. As a professional Administrator and a Disability Champion, Kausar has acquired a variety of experience in both the commercial and educational settings. Throughout her career, she has acquired a variety of qualifications and experience in both the commercial and educational settings.
Kausar’s husband suffers from anxiety and depression and he cannot work. She is the sole income earner of the household. She currently uses mobility scooter to move around. Her career focus has been to assist Manager’s and teams with her abundant experience in business, administration, human resources, marketing and more. Through her disability, she has been able to deliver good outcomes. But as many people with disability, she still struggles to find work for herself so that she can find security, whilst volunteering and giving her time to help others with disability.
We can often get lost in a sea of plans and strategies to improve accessibility, inclusion and equity in organisations. It’s our connection through these stories that make us see and recognise the person and not the disability. These stories inspire us to continue working to achieve equality and inclusion for all people, as Kausar continues to do.
Kausar has agreed to provide her contact details and is happy to hear from you.
0452 077 867