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Local program supporting young people to achieve their dreams

10-06-2022 Category: General Posted by: Anonymous

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With the support and guidance of the Individual Placement Support (IPS) program, Samantha became the first in her family to attain her Higher School Certificate (HSC) and the first student at Dubbo's Skillset Senior College to achieve a Certificate III in Child Care at the same time. 

The Individual Placement Support program supports young people aged 12-25 to find and keep employment with an employer that respects their needs. 

In 2019, 15yr old Samantha met Carole, Senior Vocational Specialist at headspace Dubbo. At the time, Samantha was in year 10 and losing all motivation for school. She lived 45 minutes from Dubbo, which meant getting up at 6.30am to catch the school bus. The thought of going to school had no appeal, even though she did have a childhood dream of becoming a childcare worker or nurse. 

With help from Carole, they started by setting small, achievable goals. Carole arranged her enrolment at Dubbo's Skillset Senior College and focused on getting Samantha on the school bus each day. 

“We took things slowly, focusing on school attendance and working closely with Skillset to ensure she met all of her goals," explains Carole.  

Samantha continued to work hard, achieve her objectives, and finished year 10. This provided her with the confidence she needed to focus on her HSC. 

Like many other students, Samantha faced significant challenges due to pandemic restrictions, mainly because she didn’t have internet access at home. Skillset provided her with the data she needed, and she was able to balance her academics at home and on campus. Samantha's confidence continued to increase as the barriers were removed.  

"You could see her self-esteem grow, and she began to believe in herself and that she would be able to pursue her dream of working in childcare or nursing," said Carole. 

In 2021, Samantha achieved what she once thought was impossible. She not only became the first in her family to complete the HSC but was also the first student at the Skillset Senior College to complete both a Certificate III and her HSC at the same time. 

"We are really proud of Samantha because she worked hard and was determined to achieve her goals," Carole remarked. 

Samantha now has her driver's licence and works full-time at a day care centre in her neighbourhood. Samantha is now a confident, independent, and self-assured young woman. 

The IPS program is available for young people aged 15-25, through headspace Dubbo at 23 Church Street or by calling 5852 1900. 


This service is funded by the Australian Government Department of Social Services. 
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