Joanne's Story

I’ve started to learn the positives and negatives about life: learning to accept and grow from my misteakes

I decided to stop university as I wasn’t feeling “myself” anymore. I was introduced to a youth worker at Flourish Australia, and from there, I was really lucky because I connected with the team straight away. They made me feel comfortable and gave me a sense of belonging and being understood.

In the beginning when I first started the program, I really didn’t think that anyone could help me overcome my problems. But by doing weekly visits and getting to know the Flourish Australia team, I was able to bond and build a great relationship with them. They were there for me – that was really important. I became more relaxed and comfortable when I talked about my background, troubles, thoughts, and ideas with them.

There were plenty of challenges and hurdles that I’ve faced, as you can imagine with severe anxiety. But now I have a great role working in Childcare and I love it. I’ve been doing a Certificate 3 Childcare course for the past six months, and I’ve found a job as an Educator at a Childcare centre. I enjoy singing with the kids, and when I bring out my ukulele we have a lot of fun! I’m dedicated to being a caring and professional member of this profession, so that we can create healthy happy children in a safe environment, so they can succeed in life.

Through my partnership with YPOP I have learnt that I seek and value harmony. I’m open-minded, flexible, creative, passionate, energetic, dedicated and hard working. These qualities I’m using to make my life fantastic. I’ve got so many things I’m keen to do, like travelling to new countries and helping young adolescents with their mental health.

Since graduating from High School I feel more mature, and I have been able to buy a car with my own money, get a job with no help, budget my finances and much more. I’ve started to learn the positives and negatives about life: learning to accept and grow from my mistakes.

I’ve also started to sing in public, which is just incredible. I was always embarrassed, and just didn’t have the confidence to go for it. Now for the last two years I’ve sung the National Anthem at the Royal Easter Show. There is no way I would have auditioned for that before I came to Flourish Australia.

And I have to acknowledge my cats. They have played a major part in eliminating my stress and decreasing my anxiety levels, especially when I’m feeling down or having issues. They also helped improve my wellbeing and boosted my mood.

Being part of YPOP has been transformative on my life. I have taken responsibility for myself and I am very grateful to be part of the program. 

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