St Kilda Pier is one of Victoria’s big builds and is taking plumbers to depths not usually required.
Emmanuel Al-Jinavo has always believed in giving back and that will never change. Find out what drives this plumber to do good.
Melbourne’s Jinavo Plumbing and Drainage has provided more than $70,000 of ‘helping hand offers’ with no material or labour costs to local sports clubs, churches and drug and rehabilitation programs.
“Without the community, there is no us, so we have to give back to who has made us who we are,” he explains. “I had a bit of a rough upbringing,
have experienced hardships, but instead of sitting there dwelling on it I’d rather help others in any way, shape or form we can. We’ll never say no to providing help.”
So, it was no surprise when, after Emmanuel had an emergency hospital stay late last year, one of his first thoughts was about how to thank those who had supported him. “I was in a fire in Port Albert and was picked up by the ambos and taken to Yarram, from there I was airlifted to the Alfred.
I really got to see how efficient the ambos and the healthcare workers are. If anything, they’re not as recognised as they should be,” he says.
Initially, Emmanuel was told a full recovery from burns to his face and arms would take between eight and 15 weeks. With a laugh, he says the
fact he ‘can’t sit still’ allowed him to be back at work just 15 days later.
“It’s good for my physical and mental health to be always doing something. I can’t be confined to a room, if that makes sense.”
He’ll also be forever grateful to the team at Jinavo Plumbing and Drainage, who kept things rolling. “The business carried on the exact same way it would have if I was there. Originally, I thought it might suffer a bit with me away, but it was the complete opposite,” he says.
True to his commitment to always help others, as soon as Emmanuel returned home, he looked for a tangible way to thank the ambulance and hospital staff. Drawing on his existing relationship with Westmeadows café The Ninth Ave, he came up with a plan to offer free coffees to Ambulance Victoria staff.
“I’d noticed a lot of ambos go to the café as they have a training facility down the road, so I thought it was perfect. It was meant to be just coffee, but then we were doing breakfast, food, anything that they wanted to order. Everything went on our tab, and we paid for it every week - we planned it for a week, but we kept it going for around three months.
“People they really appreciated what we were doing. There was one time I went in there and the café staff pointed me out, as the one doing this, and I bolted out because I don’t want the limelight.
“We’ve pumped a lot of money into the community instead of me going and buying a second house, and I will always keep doing it.”