Taylah's Story

My family is everything to me and with the support of Flourish Australia we’ve come through some tough times, stronger than ever.
Taylah’s Story

When my son Ethan was just a few months old, my partner wasn’t getting enough sleep and it triggered mental health issues for him. I was counselled to find somewhere safe to stay which essentially left me homeless, with a toddler to care for.

For a short while, we were able to stay with family in Newcastle which was a long haul from our home in Sydney where Ethan needed to be taken for medical check-ups. An Aunty looked into support solutions for us and I applied to a lot of places but Flourish Australia’s Women & Children’s Program was the only one to call me back. My application was approved so quickly that we were moved into one of their six villas in Blacktown, almost immediately.

The whole set up was so well structured and secure. There was a buzzer in my home if I needed help and an on-site counsellor available to me when needed. 

After 7 months with the Women & Children’s Program, Flourish Australia helped me to secure an 18 month lease on a home, through their Transition Housing Program.  Then they will assist with finding a place we can afford where we can live independently in our community.  My son is almost two now and he’s a firecracker so I hope to find somewhere with some space for him to run around.

The support I’ve received has helped me to get back on my feet and regain my confidence to re-focus on our future.  I never saw myself as someone who would be subject to DOCs involvement, but it happened!  Thanks to the support of Flourish Australia, I’ve since been notified that that’s all behind us now. I’ve learned valuable new life skills by going along to courses on parenting and other practical things like returning emails, paying bills and shopping on a budget. At first I felt it was all a bit routine and perhaps not for me until one of the workers said “think of it is a building block. You’re laying a new foundation for your life.”  That set me on a new path of just being fully present and making the most of every opportunity.

I still have a support worker who checks in with me once a week and together we work toward my goals. With her support, I’m gaining financial freedom from the NSW Trustee and Guardian that I’ve been stuck on since I was a teen.  I lacked the skills to manage my money back then, but now it’s time to take back control of my finances.

The stability I’ve gained since being with Flourish Australia has made it possible for me to reconcile with my partner Lachlan and it means the world to us both, to have our family back together.

I’m so grateful for the opportunities we’ve been given. I tell anyone who is experiencing what I’ve been through that if they want to change their life and find stability, then Flourish Australia is the place to start.  I was invited to tell my story at Flourish Australia’s Women & Children’s 10 Year Celebration, everyone responded with such appreciation that I feel I brought them some hope. I also spoke about my lived experience of mental health issues as a teen, at a NSW mental health group talk, and was invited to become a consumer representative for the health system. 

I can see that once Ethan starts school, there’s a whole new world to open up for me and I’m open to finding some new career direction that interests me. My time here has taught me to see the tough times in a new light – as something that makes success even sweeter once you arrive, because you know you’re resilient.

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