The Commonwealth Bank have joined forces with ConnectAbility Australia and local community partners to increase opportunities for people living with a disability in the Hunter.
In their fourth year, the Commonwealth Bank are hosting Wine and Dine for disability, led by Colin Law – the Executive Manager BPB Strategy – Frontline Engagement.
Wine and Dine for Disability pulls together top Hunter chefs and winemakers to create a fabulous night of food, matched wine and beer for community and corporate guests who are committed to delivering positive and inclusive outcomes for people with a disability living in the Hunter.
As the proud supports of the event, the Commonwealth Bank are playing a vital role in ensuring positive outcomes and solutions for people with disabilities are being actively sought.
“It is important to the Commonwealth Bank, and to me personally to assist people with a disability achieve. It makes for a richer, stronger and more caring community,” Colin Law said.
“Our focus at the Commonwealth Bank is to be an engaged part of our community through both banking and our community work. Wine and Dine has been a great initiative that combines both resulting in some amazing outcomes.
“Having our top chefs, beer and winemakers and a spectacular venue donate their time and facilities goes to show that the Hunter is focussed on equality for all our community,” he continued.
The funds raised on the night will go to local provider ConnectAbility, who support people with a disability achieve their goals. This includes education, recreation and social activities. People can learn to utilise public transport, gain skills of independence or work and be comfortable in social and recreational situations.
Many of the people supported by ConnectAbility have significant disabilities and require that little bit of extra support to achieve.
The night has also attracted its own success stories. Marina Views Function Centre kindly donates their venue for the event which is staffed through students of Callaghan College Hospitality classes.
Some of these students, due to their great work ethic and abilities have gone on to work for Marina Views or the participating Chefs – securing their future in the industry.
“This additional outcome was unexpected but has continued over the four years. I think everyone who attends can be proud that they have been the catalyst for the beginning of someone’s career by enjoying a beautifully crafted meal,” Colin said.
“Each year we sell out – and often squeeze in a couple of extra spots and the students continue to step up and amaze us with their maturity and skills.”
Over the previous three years the event has raised close to fifty thousand dollars. One of the outcomes achieved through the funds received by ConnectAbility is the purchase of equipment that has allowed a group of young people to gain work skills through a garden maintenance project.
The young people now take care of up to six local properties and feel valued and important members of the community.
Some of the people that make the event possible include; The Commonwealth Bank, Marina View Function Centre, Callaghan College teachers and students as well as a range of chefs, beer and winemakers in the Hunter region.
David Carey, the CEO of ConnectAbility is humbled and honoured by the support the event has had and continues to receive in it’s fourth year.
“The families, customers and staff of ConnectAbility are thankful for the support provided through Wine and Dine for Disability. The partnership with the Commonwealth Bank and everyone who supports the night have provided direct outcomes for individuals,” David said.
“As a community the Hunter is known for its generosity and to see that we have a beautiful venue, chefs, wine and beer makers plus individuals and organisations return again for a fourth year leaves me in no doubt that our community is focused on inclusion and breaking barriers to achievement.”
If you are interested in attending or donating to the Wine and Dine for Disability you can do so through ConnectAbility’s website.
IMAGE | Wine and Dine for Disability to showcase Hunter region’s amazing food & wine, whilst raising funds for ConnectAbility