While we’re busy getting everything ready to launch our brand new Group Programs for you guys, we found a moment to talk to one of the faces behind these exciting new services. Meet Alex, our new Program Manager!
Before Summa Care
Before starting his role at Summa Care, Alex owned a busy espresso bar in the centre of Caloundra. “I started that business back in 2015, and sold it at the start of this year. I got to know Candice, the Managing Director of Summa Care, over the years when the previous Head Office was just down the street from my shop,” Alex says. When speaking to Candice about the new training programs, he saw a great opportunity to use his extensive knowledge and skills in hospitality to build and implement the various training programs Summa Care was planning to get up and running.
The Project Manager role
When asked what exactly he does in his position as Program Manager, Alex says “My role as Program Manager was created to design and implement training and learning programs for the clients, People We Support, here at Summa Care. We provide a safe learning space where they can practice a new skill and get real-world, hands-on experience. The first program we got up and running was our Hospitality Foundations Program, also known as the Hospitality & Barista Training. This program runs out of our on-site training cafe in the retro Airstream, as a real-life cafe open to the public. Participants get the chance to learn how to make exceptional coffee and provide outstanding customer service.”
Alex mentions how excited he is about all the other program ideas they have in the pipeline, “Stay tuned to our newsletters and Social Media for more information about these programs as they begin to roll out!”.
Alex his main goals for the Group Programs
Our Program Manager is highly involved in the outcomes for our participants, and has set clear goals for himself. “My priority for the Group Programs here at Summa Care is to create a learning opportunity for participants that is not just educational, but fun. From my 15 odd years’ experience in the hospitality industry, I know first-hand that getting the opportunity to learn a skill in a hands-on, fun environment makes learning the content so much easier. I also want to provide as many opportunities as possible for the participants to develop independent and sustainable life skills, that they can take into their day-to-day lives.”
The new Group Programs
When asking Alex to provide us with an explanation of what exactly we will be offering as part of these new programs, he says “The Summa Care Group Programs aim to provide both recreational and educational activities that participants can sign-up for, to learn new skills as well as foster and maintain new friendships in a safe and inclusive environment. There are a few ideas in the works at the moment – we are close to launching our new Cooking Program that will be run from our Sunshine Coast facility in Moffat Beach. This will be our second program – we of course also have our Hospitality Foundations program up and running already from our Airstream Cafe on Daniel Street (Caloundra West). I encourage everyone to come along and support the program participants by purchasing a coffee from us between 7am and 1pm on weekdays!“
In his free time
When not in the office or cafe training our participants and creating exciting new programs, Alex is still keeping himself busy with many different hobbies. “I am a food & beverage enthusiast at heart. I only drink black coffee, and enjoy being constructively busy! Cooking and sharing meals with friends and family is something I love. I also really enjoy yoga – I try to get to at least 5 classes a week! It’s my preferred way to wind down after a constructive day at work (plus, it’s also a great sneaky workout). I have a passion for mid-century design, with an ever-growing collection of original restored furniture at home. I also really want to learn how to surf.. Perhaps I need to create a Surfing School Program!”
Alex has certainly enjoyed his time at Summa Care so far and mentions “So far during my time here at Summa Care, I have met some truly exceptional program participants who make coming to work a real joy! I can’t wait to see where the Group Programs take us in the future.”