Downer welcomes Aruma supported employees to Hexham Manufacturing Facility 

Downer welcomes Aruma supported employees to Hexham Manufacturing Facility 

Recently Downer hosted a group of supported employees from Aruma at their Hexham Manufacturing facility. This visit underscored their commitment to engaging with community partners and fostering opportunities for all individuals. 

Employing 100 people from across the region, Downer’s Hexham facility has been a cornerstone in the Newcastle area for over 40 years, providing end-to-end manufacturing solutions including switchboard and switch rooms, skid fabrication, structural steel fabrication, fitting, and machining. 

Downer has delivered over 1,900 Motor Control Centre (MCC) skids for a major oil and gas client in Queensland since 2019, as well as vast amounts of varied electrical and mechanical product to a wide range of industries and clients across the country. 

In 2023, Downer engaged Aruma, a registered NDIS disability services provider as a supplier for manufacturing components.  

This componentry goes into the manufacture of switchboards and other important electrical equipment that ensures the safe and efficient running of industrial and gas gathering facilities around Australia. 

Aruma is one of Australia’s largest not-for-profit NDIS disability service providers, supporting 5,500 adults and children with disabilities.  

Their Warabrook social enterprise, operational since 1996, employs 20 people with disability as Supported Employees, and 7 staff members, delivering metal fabrication and component manufacture for companies across Australia. 

Since Downer engaged with Aruma in April 2023, the team has supplied large quantities of preformed cable, terminal mounting strips and other important components to assist projects running smoothly. 

Their recent tour provided Aruma’s supported employees a unique insight into how their efforts contribute to Downer’s manufacturing process. It was a demonstration of how inclusive employment practices can create significant impacts and foster thriving communities. 

General Manager – Future Energy Solutions, Aaron Wylie said Downer’s collaboration with Aruma is a testament to their dedication to enabling communities to thrive. 

“We are excited to welcome the Aruma team and showcase how their valuable contributions integrate into our manufacturing operations.” 

“Engaging with diverse businesses like Aruma isn’t merely symbolic – it has a real, tangible impact on our operations.  

“Their high-quality work enhances our project delivery, benefitting both our business and the end customers we serve,” he adds. 

Aruma Production Coordinator, Brent Robards said it’s a great privilege to work alongside Downer and provide opportunities for their supported employees. 

“Our Supported Employees take a lot of pride in the work they do at our manufacturing site,” Brent said. 

“To see where their work goes next, and how that supports their local community will just further ignite their passion. I’m sure it will be a day for our history books.” 

IMAGE | Aruma supported employees at Downer’s Hexham manufacturing facility.  


Downer is a leading provider of integrated services in Australia and New Zealand. Through trusted relationships and world-leading insights, we work closely with our customers to design, build and sustain assets, infrastructure, and facilities. 

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