“You just need to take the first step and don’t ever give up.”
My childhood was pretty tough – I came from a very unhappy family. I got kicked out of home when I was very young, got into all sorts of bad stuff, I just survived day to day and didn’t feel like there was anything to live for.
When I got pregnant at 16, for some reason, I just woke up. I was determined to leave my old life behind and make something of myself. So I went back to school and studied year 11 and 12.
Somehow I always knew that learning new things would help me get a better job. I started with doing a Certificate II in Community Service Work, and a couple of years later I thought doing a Certificate III in Graphic Art would be good. These helped me to get into work to start with, so there was some money coming in, but I was at a stage where I wanted to do something more with my life, get a better job, get a better income for my kids. I was starting to think more and more about my future.
The training I’d already done had been a good start, but my plan was to get even better qualifications. I was working in hospitality organising catering for big events that were happening in the city, I really enjoyed the atmosphere and coordinating side of things. That got me interested in looking around for a course that had event management because I love the whole organisation side of things. When a course came up with a double diploma with Sport and Recreation and Event Management, I thought, you know what - that’s what I want to do.
I waited till my youngest son started school before I started to study again, as he has autism. It wasn’t easy though, he kept getting into trouble at school and I had to have lots of days off from my studies. It was tough with all this other stuff going on in my life, it would have been easy to quit, but my lecturer wouldn’t let me, he kept encouraging me, told me I could do it. And with their support, I did.
I have a fantastic job now, all because of my study - there are so many opportunities to go for. Now I’m going back to study Facilities Management because all I need to do is four units and I’ll have three diplomas - who knows where that will take me!
I know other people who are in my situation who have given up. You just need to take the first step and don’t ever give up.
This course has really helped me to take control of my life, my money and my family.