“It changed my life”

Before joining the Personal Leadership Program offered at her school, Ashlee was bullied by her classmates. She had low self-esteem and a complete lack of self-confidence. Her lack of motivation meant she was struggling to make friends or enjoy school. Quickly, her attitude towards herself changed, she began taking control of her life and her self-esteem improved dramatically.

“On the first day of the program, I was so nervous. I didn’t know what to expect. I guess you could compare it to going to a new school, those kinds of nerves. Despite this, I quickly found it enjoyable. I found the concepts interesting and was amazed at how well they applied to my life. I started to notice more things about the world around me. I listened intently to what my trainers told me, and used the techniques as much as I could in my everyday life. I was becoming more confident just by attending the sessions.”

“With the new-found self-esteem I got from this program, I actually started to feel good about myself. This was a massive deal for me; something I never thought was possible. I found myself caring less and less about what other people thought, and focused more on what I knew was good about myself. It changed my life.”

“As I said earlier, before this program, I don’t think I’d ever had a proper true happiness. I’d felt little happy twinges, but nothing compared to what Youth Opportunities gave me. I am so thankful and honoured to have been a part of this program. It was amazing, and I know that I’ll live my life successfully and happily thanks to Youth Opportunities.”

*person in photo is not Ashlee and is for illustrative purposes only

*person in photo is not Benjamin and is for illustrative purposes only

“I feel happy, hopeful and believe in myself”

Benjamin was offered a place in the Personal Leadership Program at a time where his school and home life were suffering. His grades were dropping, as he found it hard to focus in class and complete his homework. He was getting into fights with classmates and struggling to maintain friendships. At home, he wasn’t getting along with his parents or siblings. To help him cope, Benjamin turned to drugs and alcohol, further affecting his lack of motivation and self-confidence.

“I knew I wasn’t going anywhere in life, but I felt powerless to change that.”

Benjamin joined Youth Opportunities’ program to get his life back on track, and reflects back on the change it has made.

I have learned to challenge the negativity. I turned my attention to the positives in my life and treated myself and the people around me better. This helped change my relationships with my mum and dad. Before Youth Opportunities, I would go to school once or twice a week, but since learning skills to help me focus and manage my time, and working on my relationships with my peers and teachers, I have been going to school every day.  My grades have increased, and I feel proud of the progress I have made. I was on the verge of dropping out, and now I’m committed to finishing school and completing my trade apprenticeship.”

My confidence has increased so much. I can talk to people at school, and adults at my trade, with confidence now. I feel happy, hopeful and believe in myself.”

“I’m a lot stronger”

Crystal had a history of low self-esteem and self-confidence. Her relationships with her peers, family and teachers were being impacted by her internal struggle. Her parents tried putting her in counselling, but nothing was working. And then she was offered a place in Youth Opportunities’ Personal Leadership Program.

Youth Opportunities changed my attitude, confidence and motivation. By directing myself with the 4 Big Decisions – deciding to be happy, deciding to goal plan, deciding to use star communication and deciding to grow – I have been able to direct myself back on a path where I’m happier in myself, and excited for my future.”

“In the program, I learnt to express my opinion and feelings in more positive ways. I have learnt new skills to better handle down moments. I have grown as a person. I’ve made the biggest step ever in my life, to create a future for myself I am proud of and to be someone who I respect. This program has taught me to love myself.”

My friends have noticed I’m a lot stronger, and have seen how Youth Opportunities has given me the ability to lead myself into a better, healthier headspace. I’ve won friends back, made new ones and have made a significant impact on other people. My parents feel more confident that I’m able to handle my esteem, and that I’m not so worried by other people’s opinions anymore.”

“Now, I am beginning to see the light, I can see the direction to my future career. I can see my purpose, and I know I can achieve whatever I want. “

“Youth Opportunities has changed my life and given me hope for the future.”

“Thank you.”

*person in photo is not Crystal and is for illustrative purposes only

*person in photo is not Lucas and is for illustrative purposes only

“I feel better about myself”

Lucas applied for the Personal Leadership Program because he wanted the tools and skills to make his life better. He was experiencing negative thoughts, and was fighting with his mum. Lucas wasn’t motivated to go to school or do his homework. Since completing the Personal Leadership Program, Lucas’s life has completely changed for the better.

“Since doing the program, I haven’t skipped school once, not even a lesson. I have improved so much at school, I’m so much more motivated and now I actually want to do work. I know how to manage my time better, so I can start my assignments straight away.”

“At home, I have been focusing on the things I say and do, and creating a much more positive environment. I haven’t been fighting with my mum as much.”

“I feel better about myself and what I’m capable of. My teachers and parents have noticed my improvement. I now think anything is possible for me in the future and I can achieve anything I set my mind to. I’m looking forward to finishing school and doing my carpentry trade.”

Watch Head of Training Larry Waller describe one Personal Leadership Program student’s journey with us!

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