STRONGER TOGETHER: How program helps youth 'Turnabout' their life

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By Tanya O'Shea, IMPACT Community Services' Managing Director

"STRONGER TOGETHER" is a weekly column where Tanya explores key issues. This week Tanya focuses on one of IMPACT Community Services programs giving the region's youth an opportunity to better themselves - Xtreme Turnabout.

Without a little bit of guidance and the right resources, even the sturdiest of ships can stray off course.

Tanya O'Shea, IMPACT Community Services Managing Director
Tanya O'Shea, IMPACT Community Services Managing Director

And people are no different.

If you don’t have the support, tools, knowledge and understanding of yourself and the world, it can be difficult to see a future that isn’t run aground – particularly if you are young.

Trying to plan for the future can be difficult if you’re constantly in a state of fight or flight for survival or you’ve not felt capable of more.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs captures this theory best.

This concept structures physiological needs as a foundation, followed by safety needs, love and belonging, esteem and then self-actualisation.

Physiological needs include essentials like food, shelter, sleep and clothing; while safety needs incorporate personal security, employment, resources, health and property.

While this theory doesn’t strictly follow a linear pattern for some people, the general principals of needs remain relevant.

This concept also helps guide IMPACT Community Services to achieve the vision of Improving Lives and extend beyond the present to broadening the scope of one’s potential and their future.

The Xtreme Turnabout program at IMPACT works to actualise this vision.

This Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative supports 15-24-year-olds who are engaged with Youth Justice Services or Queensland Corrective Services, or at risk of being engaged.

Facilitated by our Youth Worker, the participants are supported through the entire 12month program which has a holistic approach to stabilising one’s situation and supporting them to get the education and help needed for a chance to prosper in society.

Aligning the program with Maslow’s hierarchy, Xtreme Turnabout prioritises elements of accommodation, safety, food, personal documentation and legal matters before encompassing training for small skills.

Once training starts, this could be via obtaining a white card, Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) and/or Responsible Gambling Services (RGS) prior to moving on to Certificate II and then potentially Certificate III opportunities.

For some people this was the only opportunity they were going to get to improve themselves and their education.

While the formal education side of the program is essential, Xtreme Turnabout also emphasizes the importance of being creative, being outdoors and engaging in an activity with Xtreme activity days.

This could include a trip to the beach or educational trips to venues like Snakes Downunder.

Some of the people who’ve gone through the program have reportedly stopped offending and are now employed.

Maintaining a judgement free space, this program has given some young people hope and direction for their future as contributing members of society.

For more information about Xtreme Turnabout click here.

IMPACT Community Services is in the business of changing lives for the better.

Here one of our Transition to Work participants shares her experience.

Transition to Work is an initiative by the Australian Government designed to help and support young people aged between 15 and 24 who are early school leavers and those who have had difficulty entering employment after school.

Find out more about Transition to Work

Q&A with Carla

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Hi! I’m Carla and I’m 17 years old. I am currently employed at Cuppatime Café in town.

How did you become involved with Transition to Work?

I became involved with Transition to Work when I decided I no longer wanted to be in school. This was an extremely scary and hard decision, but I knew I wanted to do it because school just wasn’t for me.

What support have you been provided with?

Transition to Work staff have been extremely supportive by allowing me to achieve my goals and even push myself to exceed them. My goals are to work my way up to Manager in the hospitality industry or to own my own café! Transition to Work also supports you by providing funding for things like driving lessons, work uniforms and even course fees. Thanks to them I have completed a Certificate III in Hospitality and am currently doing a Food Safety Supervisor course.

What have been the benefits of this?

The benefits of being with Transition to Work are endless but I think one of the main ones would be the amount of opportunities you are offered within the industry you would like to become a part of. I couldn’t have done it without the help of my Youth Coach Sam.

Register now for Transition to Work by clicking here or calling 4153 4233.

Bundaberg Region receives $7M back from Containers for Change scheme after hitting a recycling milestone

Over $7 million has been injected into the local community after the 70 millionth eligible container was returned through the Containers for Change scheme in the Bundaberg area last week.

Bundaberg’s four Container Refund Points (CRPs) have been providing locals with 10 cent refunds on eligible containers as part of the Containers for Change scheme, driving the $7 million back to individuals, charities and community groups.

Ken Noye is Chief Executive Officer of Container Exchange, the not-for-profit organisation which operates the Containers for Change scheme. He said the efforts of Bundaberg area residents to return 70 million containers since the scheme commenced in late 2018 continues to pay dividends for both the community and the local environment.

“The Containers for Change scheme continues to grow and has now returned more than two and a half billion containers across Queensland, and reduced beverage container litter in our environment by 54%,” Mr Noye said. “The efforts of Bundaberg locals to reach 70 million containers returned is a wonderful milestone, and has given more individuals, charities and community groups the opportunity to find the cash they need in their containers.”

One of the Bundaberg CRPs is run as a social enterprise by IMPACT Community Services. Container refunds help IMPACT support people experiencing disadvantage, poverty or exclusion from social, health and employment networks. IMPACT Community Services’ Enterprises General Manager Robert Henderson said the Containers for Change scheme supported a significant part of the organisation’s social enterprises.

“It’s extremely important that we continue with this fantastic program which helps IMPACT generate income that is fed back into programs to support those in need within our community,” Mr Henderson said. “Last year IMPACT’ processed more than 2.5 million containers. As well as funding life-changing community programs, it enables us to provide opportunities for workers with disabilities to gain vital skills in a supported workplace.”

Other Containers for Change CRPs in the Bundaberg area are located at CQ Recycling on Woondooma Street, ABC Recycling in Bundaberg East and Container Refund at Moore Park Beach. The Containers for Change scheme pays refunds on eligible containers in cash or via EFT or your Paypal account if customers have registered for a scheme ID on the Containers for Change website.

Charities and community groups can promote their scheme ID to supporters who can donate their refund to their chosen organisation by quoting the scheme ID when they make returns. To find out more about Containers for Change including what containers are eligible for a refund and to sign up for a scheme ID, visit containersforchange.com.au or call 13 4242.

Guidance officers from across the Bundaberg district spent an afternoon at IMPACT Community Services recently learning about its multitude of programs to help young people.

With the new school year beginning, 24 officers were given a tour of IMPACT’S Bargara Rd site and heard first-hand from leaders within the organisation.

They were given an overview of the support provided, including what’s available for those finding the traditional school system challenging.

The officers were also told about some of the initiatives aimed directly at younger people, including Get Set for Work, which is a Skilling Queenslanders for Work program focused on those aged between 15 and 19.

For guidance officers Greg Souvan and Jennifer Obst it was an informative afternoon.

“It’s been really useful to understand what services are around,” Greg said.

IMPACT’s host of wrap-around support services are available to those living in Bundaberg and surrounding areas. They include Skilling Queenslanders for Work programs such as:

And there were plenty of other services the guidance officers were keen to hear about including:

For more information about what IMPACT offers call 4153 4233.


Please note: This website may contain references to, or feature images, videos, and voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who have passed away.

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