Our vocational and tertiary scholarship program is an excellent example of what can be achieved by simply connecting with others.
We partnered with Community Sector Banking at the end of 2015 to launch a $20,000 scholarship program for our tenants across Victoria. Seven tenants were awarded with two-year scholarships to ease the financial stress of study, allowing them to focus more on their studies and goals for the future.
It is well documented that higher education levels lead to improved employment outcomes, higher salaries, and more cohesive communities. We hope that by helping to remove the financial barriers to study, those with the capability to give back but who have limited financial capacity, will be able to enrich our communities with their abilities and skills that may have otherwise remained untapped.
Meet our Recipients
Bachelor of Business (Accounting)
Kraig is a committed and dedicated single father of two sons. He isn’t a stranger to study, having achieved his HSC in 1982 whilst working fulltime.
He completed a Certificate IV in Small Business in 2006, and more recently a Diploma of Business, creating a guaranteed pathway into university to study a Bachelor of Business, majoring in accounting.
Kraig is determined to create a brighter future for himself and set an example for his sons who are doing well in school but yet to navigate tertiary study.
“You are never too old to learn”
He wants to show them that, “no matter how big, or negative, a change in your life is, or how large the hurdle is, persistence, hard work and dedication will get positive results.” Kraig has been an active community participant since the 1960’s and wants to make sure he keeps those ties to the community strong after study, volunteering his time and skills wherever possible.
Kraig demonstrates an exceptional work ethic and focus on the future. His goals include a versatile approach to future employment, securing not only his financial security but for that of his family. He is due to complete his accelerated degree at the end of 2017 and we look forward to following his journey.
Diploma in Community Services
As a part-time Disability Youth Worker at Gateway Support Services, it is a job Janet loves but after a knee injury she has needed to reassess her physical capacity.
Janet is passionate about social justice and wants to help disempowered people realise their potential and achieve their goals. communities we live in.
She believes this study will enable her to find permanent full-time work that is less physically demanding, taking the pressure off her knee for the meantime and providing her with employment options as she ages. Janet is a future orientated person with drive and motivation to give back to her community.
“The Diploma of Community Welfare is a course that allows me to work in an area of my passion which is social justice…and [it] offers me a bright new opportunity and future for the next 20 years.”
“Before this, I wouldn’t have thought I could make a difference. But now I know I can, and I have.”
Inspired to take on further study Janet started her Diploma in Community Services work earlier this year. The scholarship has alleviated the costs of rent and helped her to purchase much needed textbooks. While Janet continues to do well in her subjects, it’s what the course has empowered her to do in her community that is truly remarkable.
Janet has taken a dangerous intersection near her daughter’s school to the local member for action and has been successful. “They are installing bumps in the road to slow traffic and will eventually install these traffic lights that make noise to help road safety.”
A true champion for her community Janet loves making a difference and is determined to see the diploma through to its completion.
Our scholarships don’t just change the lives of the recipients, but they set in chain a series of events that help improve the
Bachelor of Education/ Graduate Diploma in TESOL
Julie came to Australia at the age of 10, working hard to learn English as a second language and gain her HSC. Her goal is to become an English Second Language teacher, completing her Bachelor of Education at the end of 2016. Concurrently Julie also completed a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment that will allow her to broaden her employment options to adult education.
In 2017, she has begun her Graduate Diploma in TESOL, allowing her to teach English as a second language. This commitment to furthering herself with study that will provide her with multiple employment opportunities is a testament to Julie and her dedication to giving back to the community. She wants to use her studies to assist the influx of Syrian refugees and sees it as a qualification that not only benefits the community, but will be in high demand in the near future.
On top of her full-time study load Julie has completed a draft Masters proposal which combines her specialty in ESL with her love of textiles, “Creativity in teaching is so important and that’s what I try to bring to all of my classes.”
The reception to her masters proposal has been enthusiastic with talk of upgrading it to a doctoral level project. This would have Julie become a globe-trotting research academic with her first stop being Hungary. “It’s been a huge amount of work...but it’s what I want to do so I’ve just tried my best to keep my feet on the ground.”
Julie credits her unrelenting focus and drive to her passion to help refugees and the money from the scholarship has helped “considerably” to reduce the financial stress of study. Resources that can easily be taken for granted add up, “it doesn’t seem like a huge thing at the time but being able to print in colour and buy the materials you need to do well makes a difference. Just knowing you can do the best you can gives a huge boost.”
Just think of all the amazing things the people in our community could achieve if they were able to take on study without having to worry about where they will find the money for textbooks or ink.
Bachelor of Environment and Conservation Science
Liam has shown commendable commitment to his studies and future over the last 12 months. Determined to follow his passion he has completed his first year of a Bachelor of Environmental Studies and Conservation Science in Ballarat.
This required him to move out of home and away from his close-knit family and friends. He credits his scholarship for “taking the pressure off,” allowing him to focus more time on his study, and reducing the amount of work he needs to do simply to cover day-to-day living expenses.
This time has also allowed him to pursue other opportunities, including a scholarship through his home town council in Swan Hill. The criteria required Liam to stand out amongst other applicants by demonstrating extensive community involvement throughout previous years and he was successful!
The council scholarship provides Liam with additional financial support as well as a six week intensive internship doing what he loves. The experience will no doubt propel Liam above and beyond his peers at university as most internships aren’t sought out until closer to final year. It is an outstanding start to his first year at university and we look forward to following Liam in his journey. This scholarship will continue to alleviate some of the financial pressures he will face while studying for the next 12 months.
Bachelor of Education (Primary)
Terri-Lynn is a single mother of two children and is determined to blaze the trail for her family by completing university study and becoming a Primary School Teacher. She is also the first of her family to attend university and is determined to show her two children that they too can achieve their dreams “Hopefully my children will look up to me as a role model and [it] encourages them to fulfil their dreams.”
Terri-Lynn is now in her second year of her three year Bachelor we are so proud of her achievements.
“I did so much better than I thought I would and now I know what I’m capable of.”
The costs of the textbooks came as a shock, totalling almost $400 for one semester, “the scholarship helped tremendously, I don’t know what I would have done without it.” Between textbooks, extra childcare, and transport, university can feel like an uphill battle. Fortunately our scholarship program helps to alleviate these expenses, giving a helping hand to those motivated to change their lives through education and achieve their dreams.
After the intensive practicals in the classroom Terri-Lynn is now even more motivated to complete her course, “I love seeing the application of what I’m learning at uni. It’s great and I know it’s what I want to do.”
Diploma of Counselling
Rosemary demonstrates exceptional dedication to her education and her children. She is future orientated and strives to succeed. She has been accepted to study at a Masters level, and will undertake it while studying the Diploma of Counselling.
Rosemary demonstrates excellent work ethic as these studies will be completed alongside raising three children as a single mum, and working as a Preschool teacher. She is passionate about setting a good example for her children and has shown her ability to learn and commit herself through her previously attained undergraduate degree in Education (Early Childhood). An incredibly self-motivated and committed individual, Rosemary demonstrates the ability to set and achieve goals whilst creating a vast array of employment opportunities.
“It is very important for children to see there is more to life than welfare.”
Certificate IV and Diploma in
Akolda was inspired by his own youth workers and wants to give back to his community in the same way. Already an inspiring and self-motivated community-driven young man, he has donated his time to build a local basketball court, and regularly donates money to Oxfam.
As Akolda is from South Sudan, he is acutely aware of the cultural needs of those in his community and wants to help. He believes that qualifications in Community Services will place him in the best possible position to create long-lasting change in others. His support worker Chris Farrell says, “he is a very dedicated young man,” and has firm belief in Akolda and his future.
In 2016 he completed a Certificate IV in Community Services and in 2017 has started the Diploma.
Our scholarships give our recipients a chance to change their lives through education by easing the financial burden of study. We believe success should be determined by your passion and commitment, not your purse strings.
Akolda wants to be in best possible position to create long-lasting change in others and we believe he will get there. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.