Picking yourself up when you’re down is one of the hardest challenges we face, but it’s also one of the most important. Some of life’s most transformational and important opportunities show themselves in our most vulnerable moments and darkest days. Whether we choose to accept the help that shows itself in these moments can often be the deciding factor for the course of our lives.

This is something Carole – a young indigenous member of the Y’s Narrogin Regional Leisure Centre in the South of WA – knows all too well. Like many other young people, Carole’s life turned upside down the day that she left high school. Without the familiar routine and purpose of schooling, coupled with several untimely personal tragedies, Carole began to struggle. Fortunately, it was at this time that Carole found the Y.

The Y offered Carole the independence and opportunities for personal growth, crucial for any young person. Through the Y Carole was able to further her education with TAFE courses, learn to write a solid resume, earn her learner’s permit and provisional licence, find stable employment as a Customer Service Officer, and achieve certification as a lifeguard through the Bronze Medallion program. All of these initiatives may seem small, but for Carole their combined impact was life-changing.

Her relationship with the Y has also instilled a passion for youth work within Carole, who hopes to empower other young people the same way that the Y did for her. “The Y gives people inspiration to be a better person, and they help you better yourself. They’ve helped and inspired me,” said Carole.

Carole has progressed from her role as Customer Service Officer to Lifeguard, and now Duty Manager at the Narrogin Regional Leisure Centre after recently completing her pool operations course allowing her to further continue to progressing her career in the health and wellness industry.

Carole’s journey so far has seen her transform from an at-risk youth to a valued member of the Y family, and it’s still far from over. Carole is just one of the millions of people and moments shaping the Y and Australian society today, and we can’t wait to see what she does next.

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