About Us

Travengers was inspired by the founder Agnes’ younger autistic sister, Elise.

Travengers was launched in January 2020, after many years of frustration with the lack of opportunities for young people with social support needs.

Our Why

 

Many young neurodivergent people struggle to fit in to the world, to make friends, or to build independence apart from family. Some may spend a lot of energy trying to fit in, by masking and adapting to a society where they feel like they don’t belong. While some just need a bit of support to be able to achieve their dreams!

Being excluded or struggling to fit in can cause loneliness, anxiety and other challenges. At the same time, things like travelling can be complex, with all the uncertainties, changes and planning that often comes with it. This is why we started Travengers AU – Supported Youth Travel. 

Everyone deserves the opportunity to feel connected, travel, enjoy the world around them, and to be appreciated and accepted as a valid part of a community. Through Travengers we enable building social networks with like-minded people, travelling and building skills and confidence. And we aspire to educate others around us on our way.

 

Some Insights

Our Mission & Vision

Mission Statement

We will create equal opportunities for young people with social support needs to travel, challenge themselves, build connections and enjoy a good quality of life.

We will educate others through our travels, and create a ripple-effect of acceptance and understanding.

Vision

A world where travel and social connection is possible for all young adults.

A world where people with hidden disabilities are accommodated for, and accepted and appreciated for who they are.

To be available for young people across Australia and beyond. 

Our Values

Kindness

And respect between us and everyone involved, no matter who we are and our backgrounds.

Curiosity

To listen, and to keep learning. To seek new adventures, and to be open-minded.

Freedom

Creating opportunities, and empowering others to live as they wish.

Connection

Feeling connected can mean a lot for your mental health. We seek to create meaningful connections.

Meet The Team

Who We Are

Agnes Abelsen

Founder & Director
Agnes is a Learning Disability Nurse with 11 years experience working in the disability sector, including accessible travel. She's deeply passionate about equal opportunities and advocacy for young people on the spectrum. She also loves being active outdoors.

Steph Wilson

Travel Organiser 

Steph loves travelling. She has been to over 30 countries herself and helped travelers go to over 150 countries during her career, and has travelled around following the Special Olympics.

Jordy Breen

Trip Planner
Jordy is an adventurous spirit who loves to explore everything life has to offer. She is passionate about Disability Support, Mental Health and Equal Opportunity for all, and has been in the Disability Sector for the past 7 years. Jordy has a sunny smile and caring nature and looks forward to helping travellers reach their goals and have new experiences!

Grace Faulder

Social Guide and Virtual Group Facilitator
Grace is a passionate disability advocate and wants to help others to travel, meet new people, and achieve their goals. She is a 3rd year Occupational Therapy student at USYD.

Ella Teague

Support Guide and Virtual Group Facilitator
Ella is studying to become an OT and loves travelling. She also loves to socialise and challenge herself, and supporting others to achieve their goals.

Greg Stewart

Support Guide
Greg is a boxing trainer, Support Worker and life coach. He's passionate about mental health and has a warm nature and a chilled vibe!

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Jamaica Palispis

Social Media Manager
Jamaica is studying Business in International Tourism. She believes all young people deserve the opportunity to travel and live life, and therefore fell in love with Travengers' mission.

Jarvis Lap Tran

Tourism and Marketing Intern
My name is Jarvis, I am studying Bachelor of International Tourism. Exploring different cultures, learning history has been my passion since childhood. Therefore, I always want to introduce and bring useful knowledge, information as well as the best experiences to visitors, especially special travellers of Travengers.

Our Support Guides

All our Support Workers/Guides have a minimum of First Aid Certificate, Police check, Working With Children Check, references, and relevant experience. We follow the NDIS Code of Conduct, as well as our own tour training and procedures.
Enquire to become a part of our team of Support Guides!

Our Story

Travengers was inspired by the founder Agnes Abelsen’s younger autistic sister, Elise. Elise was diagnosed late, and during her years in a mainstream school, she often fell between the cracks, not feeling like she fitted in anywhere. Now being 21, Elise wants to have friends, study, have a job and travel. She has amazing qualities, yet the world is not built for different.

Through studying Learning Disability Nursing and working over 11 years with people with disabilities and young autistic people, Agnes met many others struggling with loneliness, anxiety and making friends.

In 2017, Agnes moved from Norway to Australia to work in disability. Here she heard about a young man and his carer travelling from Europe to and around Australia. They were having the time of their lives. Hearing this, Agnes realised she had never met a young person with support needs on her travels, even though she had met many wanting to do so, including her sister. 

Knowing how much it means having something to look forward to, having people around you who accept you, and what having a good quality of life means for someone’s mental health – it sparked a strong motivation to make a change.

Besides, if Agnes could travel the world, why shouldn’t her sister be able to?

And so… the idea of Travengers was born, and in January 2020 it was finally launched, right before the pandemic. Since then we’ve connected many people through trips, social events and virtual tours, we’ve built a team, established an advisory board, and are in the process of expanding our services. We want young people and their families across Australia to be assured there are opportunities out there to meet people and be more independent, while experiencing the joys of travelling. 

There are still a lot of misconceptions around autism and hidden disabilities, and we will continue to work on our mission towards acceptance and inclusivity.

Our Supporters

We are fortunate to be supported by some great organisations.

Support our mission

Does what we do align with you? Get involved and make a real difference by supporting our vision.