TRACEY Blair has always had a love of helping others and now she gets to do it via a new kitchen with her namesake - Tracey's Kitchen - where she will be serving a community breakfast to ensure IMPACT participants well on their way to a great start each day. An official opening was held at IMPACT Community Services today at 1pm with more than 40 people in attendance to cheer her on.
Tracey's mum, Anne, is overwhelmed with the support Tracey has received at IMPACT. "I cannot speak highly enough of IMPACT," said Anne. "I was speechless when they offered Tracey this opportunity. I was worried about what would happen after Tracey first left school but her path unfolded with the support and encouragement she has received from IMPACT staff. She has grown so much; she is much more independent and her confidence is blossoming, so much so she can even be quite cheeky now."
IMPACT Manager, Daniel Leary, has witnessed Tracey’s personal growth firsthand during her time at IMPACT and was really excited to offer her this opportunity. "She has gone from shy and quiet to someone who is now part of our IMPACT family. It was wonderful to offer her a chance to give back in the way she has always enjoyed – giving to others."
Tracey, now 27, started with IMPACT more than 6 years ago as a participant in the day service for young adults with a disability, after two years of building her confidence and learning new skills she then expressed an interest in undertaking a Certificate III in Hospitality course. It was soon recognised though that to keep up with the course content she would need to start with the Skilling Education and Employment (SEE) program to boost her literacy and numeracy knowledge. All her effort was put into learning and in December 2015 she achieved a Statement of Attainment in Certificate III Hospitality. Since then she has spent time doing work experience at Take the Plunge Café and is now super excited to start in her own kitchen.
Tracey's Kitchen will serve IMPACT’s students and participants a community breakfast; tea, coffee and toast; to help them start their day on a full stomach. The community kitchen is supported through IMPACT’s Philanthropic Fund and Billy Healy from 4BU Wide Bay today came on board to sponsor the signage for Tracey's Kitchen.
The original kitchen fit out was destroyed in the 2013 floods and a rebuild has only been made possible with secured funding through an FRRR – Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal submission.