“You would think that after hours spent on a flight over from the UK, arriving in Adelaide would leave me jet lagged and exhausted. But this was certainly not the case when I found myself at the Youth Opportunities Scholarship presentation evening. Wow, what an event!
Right from the outset, there was a buzz of excitement in the room as the graduates walked in – heads held high and full of pride – for not only their accomplishments during the Personal Leadership Program, but now as they stood ready to be awarded a scholarship to help them achieve their future career and educational goals.
And, for their families, well, this was a celebration of their young person and you could see the delight they had for being able to stand alongside them and share in their success.
Before we were all seated and the formal proceedings began, I was lucky enough to speak with the graduates and their families, to meet with the incredible donors who had funded the scholarships, the school educators and leaders who were there to support their students, and board members of Youth Opportunities. It was at that moment that it really dawned on me how Youth Opportunities brings people together, and how the changes in these young peoples lives is only made possible because of these partnerships.
And then the scholarship presentations began.
One after another the young people walked to the stage to collect the amazing scholarships, families side of stage ready to capture photos that would be treasured – an array of items were provided, items that you or I may take for granted but were needed by these students to not only help them excel in their future development but also help remove financial barriers that were holding them back from being successful. From computers, tutoring and textbooks, to cameras and study equipment. I was humbled by the tremendous support of our scholarship donors, and when I learnt that one young graduate, Jadzia, had been awarded a scholarship to fund her entire university education, I was just blown away.
After the ceremony, I was left with an overwhelming sense of positivity as so much was given to so many who would truly benefit from it. On reflection, that night, I just knew it was where I needed to be, working with Youth Opportunities, which empower and enable so many young people to succeed. It was a great night and the scholarships are an excellent initiative. Well done, Youth Opportunities and the donors who make these scholarships possible! I am excited for this new chapter…”
Larry Waller, Head of Training
Many thanks to our scholarship donors, including the Adam Scott Foundation, Peter & Joan Marshman, Graham Hobbs, The Wyatt Trust, Kain Foundation, Thyne Reid Foundation, Wes & Sue Seja and Stephen & Gill Hicks.