A Queensland-first program at Woodridge aimed at empowering and equipping families is giving the community a new source of hope.
FINISHING high school is usually associated with Schoolies Week and the glitz and glamour of school formals. But for some Logan students it’s also associated with a loss of community.
Youth worker Edgar Venegas says students at Woodridge State High School often feel a ‘sense of loss’ after graduating.
“The school becomes like a family; part of their support network. When this is gone the students feel lost as they transition into life after school.”
In a bid to smooth this transition, Woodridge State High School has launched an Australia-first ‘Community Hub’ program aimed at supporting students and their families after they graduate.
The important project links community services, education and training providers, and government organisations to provide vulnerable graduating Year 12 students and their families with the hope and opportunity to enter the workforce.
Mr Venegas says it’s about letting students and families know that when their children leave the school they are not forgotten.
“We are here to support students, to help them find work and to help equip them and give them skills so that they can find their way after school.
“Our students come from diverse cultural backgrounds and we help these students, most who speak English as a second language, to understand how to go about getting a job and how to write a resume.”
Project Manager Josephine Aufai says the Hub continues to transform the community. “We are seeing people and a community empowered to reach their full potential,” says Ms Aufai.
Woodridge graduate and mother of four Tamara says the Hub helped her complete a certificate course and enrol in a Bachelor of Human Services at Griffith University.
“Now I feel I can do anything,” says Tamara.
Further to job and university transition support, the program, which is the only one of its kind in Queensland, also provides health advice and cross-cultural workshops, as well as resettling students and their families who have recently arrived in Australia.
“When people arrive in Australia there are lots of issues. The Community Hub is about providing integrated support. This includes conducting courses on home fire safety, storm safety and where to go for help.
“It’s about building a stronger community.”
The Community Hub is a partnership with the not-for-profit organisation BoysTown.