Narrabri youth 'Work it out'

Work it out flyer

The youth of Narrabri were given the opportunity to 'work it out' - 'it' being the general direction of their lives, thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Domino’s Good to Give grant program. Narrabri Shire Youth Centre received the funding to deliver two four-day leadership courses for 17 – 25 year olds. The courses covered topics such as goal setting, health and wellbeing, financial planning, job preparation, resume writing and interview skills, personal image and branding.

In the local area, the gap between school and tertiary education or employment was identified as a risk for disengagement. Young people can become unmotivated, lack direction and become involved in anti-social behaviours. Narrabri is a small community with only a limited number of service providers and in recent years, rates of domestic assaults have risen and drug use remains well above the state average (LGA Ranking Rool, NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research, 2015).

Helen Dugdale from Narrabri Shire Youth Centre said, “it was wonderful for FRRR and their partners to fund this program. The youth leadership course has had some really good results with participants learning goal setting and communication skills.”

At the end of the four-day course, the participants were given a brief to give a two-minute speech describing who they are, what they got out of the program and what they want to do in life. Here are some examples:

"I didn't know what to expect or what I'd get out of it. Who knew that learning about what kind of person you are could be so much fun! Gaining skills and confidence in areas such as resume writing, self-esteem and personal image. I now know how to present myself for a potential interview. Financial planning, public speaking and stress management seminars have prepared me for anything life decides to throw at me. My childhood dream is to attend UNE to become a Primary school teacher, and the skills I have learnt over this course bring that dream just a little bit closer. Thanks."

"Who am I? Allow me to tell you. I am 17 yo and enjoy creative writing, dancing and sleeping. I'm studying my HSC and eventually hope to go to Uni to study Early Childhood & Primary Teaching. Over this short period of time I have learnt so much. I am now able to write my own resume, and I can set achievable goals. My money is a huge problem, with the financial planning day, I now know how to save for my future. I now have motivation to study because I know I want to go to Uni. Being around encouraging people has built up my confidence and self-esteem. Honestly, I struggle with who I am. I am always influenced by people I'm around, but now I know who I am and who I want to be. My future is looking so much brighter now, thanks."

"Wow, what a ride! Throughout this particular journey, I've learnt a variety of things, ranging from money saving, to writing resumes, to dressing for the job you want. Always believing in myself, making new friends, group work and so much fun. But mostly, being prepared. Thank you"

The aim of this project was to increase access to education and employment opportunities, life skills and personal sense of direction and morale for up to 60 young people. From this small amount of feedback, it is clear that this program has made a difference to the youth in the Narrabri area and opened their eyes to new and real opportunities.

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