Em Rusciano tells the story of how she hired a girl from Newcastle named Gem Evans

Backstage: Em Rusciano and Gem Evans at the Palais Theatre in Melbourne.

Comedian and radio host Em Rusciano has told a heartwarming story on Facebook about how she hired a girl from Kotara.

“It’s long, but it’ll put a fire in your belly, I promise,”wrote Em, who co-hosts the 2DayFM breakfast show with Grant Denyer and EdKavalee.

“One night, I was laying in bed and my assistant forwarded an email that she felt I’d love. She was bloody right.”

The email was fromGem Evans. Gem was soon to becomeEm’s assistant tour manager.

Here’s the email.

Dear Em (& team),

With a kickass 2018 tour in the works comes the need for a kickass tour intern/logistics queen with an epic work ethic and heart of gold! I am 23 years old from Newcastle. Safe to say I live life at 200 per cent.I have my Cert 3 & Diploma in Event Management, Bachelor of Business (Convention & Event Management) and moved to Perth to complete my internship at Perth Arena, while completing my final year of uni and studying threediplomas at the same time #overachiever. I have worked at Newcastle Entertainment Centre in ticketing for the past fouryears and as an event manager for the past 2.5 years. Currently balancing twoevent management roles and Ticketek –safe to say I LOVE the industry! My ultimate career goal is to work for Michael Gudinski (sure he might be retired by the time I get there, but I will get there!!). I have mild cerebral palsy, so basically an exaggerated limp (I am fully mobile and fully capable within a tour/venue setting). My CP has not stopped me from doing a single thing, including climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge. If anything it has made me work 100 per centharder to provemyself. I am the crazy kid who loves what she does! Venues and live events of all genres are ‘my happy place’ (both personally and professionally). I have probably spent a small house deposit attending events (including you in Newcastle #amazing, tosmall local gigs to Madison Square Garden). I know I have found the right industry when I attend events for pleasure and I find myself distracted by the event logistics, access lanyards and the various elements that makethe overall show! I am a sponge and absorb everything and any information, so would relish the opportunity to be a part of this tour! I would, of course, do this unpaid and understand all travel and work expenses would be my own! I would be happy to travel to Sydney or fly to Melbournefor an interview. I am happy to send my resume and give references to your team. I am a believer in finding what’s good for your soul, working hard and taking risks. This is a decision you would not regret, I can assure you.I am happy to do absolutely anything that would assist within the tour setting!! I look forward to chatting to your team further! Warm Regards, Gem.

Emresponded with: “Hey Gem, Yep. I’m gonna fly you down for an interview. My assistant Lucy will be in touch tomorrow. That was a great email. FYI – no-one works for me for free. That’s not how I roll. Well done you, on backing yourself in. Em xx.

Em finished her story like this: “And the rest is history. I’ll never do another tour without her.Back yourselves inbecause you just never know!”.

Genuine GemGem Evans recentlyfinished the two-month gig with Em’sEvil Queen Tour.

The comedy showtook in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth.

“It’s been incredible. The team was so welcoming. They took on my experience and willingness to learn,” Gem said.

“Everyone was so welcoming without being patronising at all. I was a valued member of the team from the beginning. I felt like it was mutually beneficial.

“It was my first touring role. There wasa lot of things to learn.”

Gem has previously spent a lot of time thinking about whento disclose her disability when applying for jobs.

“Doyou disclose it in the letter and know that potentially you won’t get a callback? Or do you wait for it to be that awkward experience at theinterview,” she said.

“I got to the point [with Em] where I laidit all on the line. I thought she’deither appreciate it, which she did, or I’d havenothing to lose.”

She said the job wasn’tadvertised. She simply emailed Em, seeking an opportunity.

She wanted to join thetour because ofherpassion for the industry.

“I respected what Em did, her genuine approach, work ethic and career, butI wasn’t a fan girl.I knew from when I was a teenager that event management, specifically touring, was what I wanted to do.”

She said cerebral palsy has always been part of who she is, but she’s not defined by it.

She doesn’t want people to treat her in a tokenway because she hasa disability. She wantsto be treated in a genuine way. In the case of employment, she wants tobe part of a team because she deserves to be –because ofher qualifications and experience.

She said Em Rusciano and promoter Frontier Touring did exactly this “in the most authentic way possible”.

Newcastle Herald

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