Compass launches new retail social enterprise showcasing disability talent

Division 10 Councillor David Law, along with Compass Founder and CEO, David Dangerfield, has officially opened the Compass Institute’s new retail social enterprise in Nambour, “Wabi Sabi Creations”.

Wabi Sabi Creations is a unique social enterprise selling hand-crafted pieces made by local people with disabilities in a supported environment, who attend one of the many Compass Institute Campuses. It will also soon offer opportunities for people with intellectual and/or physical disabilities attending Compass to undertake supported retail traineeships in the store.

“I am delighted to celebrate the opening of Wabi Sabi Creations here in the centre of Nambour”, said Cr David Law.

“There are two key features with this new retail outlet coming to town. Firstly they are demonstrating their belief in Nambour and its strong future. And secondly, it makes perfect sense for Wabi Sabi Creations to choose Nambour because our town is known for its diverse community where everyone belongs.”

Wabi Sabi Creations is one of many social enterprises founded by the Compass Institute, all of which aim to provide hands-on skills-based training and vocational pathways to people with disabilities, along with challenging community perceptions about what people with disabilities are really capable of.

“There is a hidden assumption in mainstream society that a person with a disability is a liability”, said Mr. Dangerfield. “And that as such, they are best supported by welfare style solutions.

“At Compass we start with the assumption that a person with a disability is an asset, and like all assets, is best supported by learning, development and vocational opportunities.

“The Compass social enterprise model opens up a world of opportunity for people with a disability to experience and be seen in valued roles – as shop assistants, as creative artists, as baristas and very importantly, as role models to younger children with disabilities who can begin to dream that they can be whatever and whoever they want to be.

Wabi Sabi Creations also adds to Compass’ growing presence in Nambour. In May this year, Compass opened a new Learning and Development Campus just across the courtyard in C-Square – its sixth Campus – focusing on structured learning, development and creative programs for people with intellectual disabilities.

Compass has also been successfully operating a social enterprise café on Nambour Connection Road, Connections Café, for over 5 years now. This enterprise has offered meaningful vocational opportunities for over 50 young people with disabilities over this time and is about to undergo a transformation to allow for even bigger opportunities in the near future.

“Compass has successfully transplanted into Nambour, a complete ecosystem that supports school leavers to access further learning, skills-based training and genuine vocational experiences”, said Mr. Dangerfield.

“We encourage the young person to explore their abilities, to think big and to work hard to become their ideal self.

“We’ve been asked ‘Why Nambour?’, and the response is: Because we believe in Nambour as a community of people, who want the best for their sons and daughters whether they have a disability or not.

“When you believe in people and in communities, they invariably rise up to meet those expectations. Compass is proud to be a part of the redevelopment of this community.”

The Compass Institute has been operating for over 25 years and provides further education, skills-based training and vocational pathways to young people with intellectual and physical disabilities across multiple campuses and social enterprises from Caboolture through to Gympie.

You will find the new Wabi Sabi Creations store at C-Square, 52-64 Currie St, Nambour. ... Read more



Compass has this week opened their brand new Campus in heart of Nambour! Ted O’Brien MP, Federal Member for Fairfax, officially opened the new Nambour premises, alongside Compass Founder and CEO, David Dangerfield.

“The team at Compass do a fantastic job, and I’m really honoured to support them,” Mr O’Brien said.

“I have taken an active interest in the role they play here on the Sunshine Coast, supporting people with intellectual and physical disabilities. I think that C-Square will really come to represent Compass Square in Nambour. From now on, when you think C-Square Nambour, you think Compass.

“They are going to bring such goodness to this area and I’m absolutely delighted. The real winners out of this – it isn’t Compass, it’s actually Nambour, and I’m delighted because Compass and Nambour will grow together.”

The Compass Institute provides further education, skills based training and vocational pathways to young people with intellectual and physical disabilities.

Compass Founder and CEO, David Dangerfield, said, “Compass has grown from humble origins supporting three young men with disabilities in a community hall in Palmwoods to now providing support to 166 people and their families through six campuses from Caboolture to Gympie.

“I refer to them as campuses because of their focus on learning and development opportunities. We have always challenged the implicit notion that people with a disability are liabilities requiring welfare.

“Compass is a showcase that allows people with disabilities to demonstrate that they are in fact assets to their community. Like all assets their potential is unlocked through structured learning and development programs and of course – opportunity.

“Compass also has a range of very successful social enterprises that provide the opportunity for people with disability to participate in meaningful ways in their community and to experience that sense of achievement and pride we all feel at the end of a job well done.

The new premises will allow Compass to create a new leading-edge learning and development centre in the heart of Nambour.

“Locating dynamic institutions like Compass into C-Square is going to give Nambour a real boost,” Mr O’Brien added.

“We need to more inclusive if we are going to build better and more resilient communities, and this is a great initiative.”

Looking ahead, Compass hopes to offer market stalls, art installations, music, and other performance events throughout the C-Square public spaces. Compass will also be opening a new social enterprise retail store, Wabi Sabi, in the C-Square precinct in June.

Through Compass’ innovative social enterprise model, this store will not only offer retail traineeships and vocational training opportunities to young people with disabilities but will also sell a range of products made by those who attend Compass across their six local Campuses.

You will find Compass’s new premises at C-Square, Ground Floor (Courtyard), 52-64 Currie Street, Nambour.


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Temporary Transformation Payment (TTP)

The Compass Institute (Compass) is a registered NDIS Provider and as a provider of community and centre-based activities we are eligible to apply Temporary Transformation Payment (TTP) rates.

In line with the rules in the NDIS price guide, the rates Compass charges for supports depends on the nature of the support, where the support is delivered, the time of day that the support is delivered, how complex the participant’s needs are, and the ratio of supports delivered (i.e. if the participant is supported one-to-one by a support worker, or in a group supported by the same worker). Compass charges participants at the TTP rates under the NDIS price guide.

Compass provides support under the following Registration Group Names:

  • Development of Daily Living and Life Skills
  • Participation in Community, Social and Civic Activities
  • Group and Centre Based Activities
Support rates applied by Compass are based on the rates in the NDIS price guide; please refer to attached schedule of charges.

If you have questions or queries, please contact us via phone on 07 5445 9116 or email [email protected] ... Read more


New partnership with the Big Pineapple

A new partnership with Compass and the Big Pineapple, announced today, will see people with disability supporting new commercial ventures at the Big Pineapple.

Compass is an award-winning, Sunshine Coast based service for people with disability, offering numerous enriching life skills and vocational opportunities. Through Compass, they build skills and confidence through various ventures such as working on the local 20-acre Compass Farm, along with other enterprises such as cafes, a woodwork shed, pottery, and commercial kitchen. The newly announced partnership with the Big Pineapple extends on Compass’ successful training model where people with disability learn and apply skills, readying them for vocational opportunities in the community.

Compass CEO, David Dangerfield, expressed his delight at partnering with the Big Pineapple. “Together with the Big Pineapple team, we will build a best practice model for inclusion of people with a disability in valued roles, that will rival anything seen in this country.”

“We strongly support the vision of the Big Pineapple to return agribusiness and food related tourism to this iconic location. With dozens of enterprises ready to call the Big Pineapple home over the coming years, we have eager people, supported by teachers and volunteers, ready to ‘pitch in’ and help the Big Pineapple become a great success.”

Jim Costello, Big Pineapple Renewal Project Director, agreed, “We are pleased to welcome Compass into the Big Pineapple family, and we see numerous opportunities for people with disability across our site. We are offering land and space for farming ventures, with the produce able to be sold in our refurbished market hall, just as one example. We also see Compass workers supporting other food and beverage operators who are coming to the Big Pineapple”.

“As part of the Big Pineapple refurbishment program commencing this year, we are returning the iconic pineapple farm across the slope near the train tracks. The Compass crew can make sure our pineapples are always well tended and ready to be included in our re-booted pineapple sundaes and parfaits, as we welcome more visitors to our site.”

Local Sunshine Coast Councillor, Cr Jenny McKay enthusiastically expressed her support. “It’s wonderful two great Sunshine Coast hinterland companies have teamed up, and I can see tremendous opportunities for Compass workers to contribute in many practical ways at the Big Pineapple”.

“From first-hand experience I know Compass is dedicated to helping people with disability and their families. Through the assistance of corporate partners like the Big Pineapple we can ensure we are one of the most caring and inclusive communities in Australia.”

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Generous Support from Sunshine Coast Council

An early Christmas present from our local council arrived this month in form of a grant for $10,000 to enable Compass to install a Wheelchair Lift into our brand-new bus located at the Caloundra Campus.   This project, proudly supported by the Sunshine Coast Council’s grants program will enable all of our trainees to enjoy the regular outings arranged by our wonderful staff.

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