“Being a single mother shouldn’t hold you back.” Amy’s story.

After six years of unemployment while juggling sole parent responsibilities, Amy has celebrated six months with the New South Wales Aboriginal Land Council (ALC) in Administration.

A life change

Amy had completed high school and was working in pick packing. When a friend fell ill, Amy took on the responsibility of his carer. They became more than friends, but the relationship broke down after Amy had their son.

“Things became very difficult,” Amy said. “I moved home with my parents when I became a single mother, but I couldn’t work as I needed to care for my son. I didn’t go out and I didn’t have any friends. I was alone, even though I lived with my family.”

“And financially it was difficult, I was relying on the single parent pension. It was hard.”

A career change

Things changed when Amy met with the team at MatchWorks, Mt Druitt, where Amy participated in tailored programs such as Deadly Yakka, Wambinya and Indigenous Mentoring.

“Amy was able to benefit from upskilling opportunities and was provided with the tools and information she needed to succeed with finding a job,” MatchWorks Indigenous Employment Consultant, Belinda Condon said.

Amy worked closely with Belinda and MatchWorks Employment Consultants, Sarah Tate and Crystal Parker who helped her to:
• Recognise her personal and professional skills.
• Refresh her resume.
• Engage with ALC and prepare for the interview.
• Utilise further Indigenous mentoring after her successful interview.

Amy after graduating from our Deadly Yakka program in Mount Druitt, NSW.

“The support I received was wonderful,” Amy said. “Belinda was amazing. She helped me to land my job with ALC and with the certificate 3 and 4 in Business Administration – I wouldn’t have known about those without her. When I was offered work, Sarah took me shopping so I could get clothes to wear.”

“With other recruiters I felt like a number, and they weren’t understanding of my parental responsibilities. Belinda helped me identify my skills so I could use them professionally, especially the ones I’d learned after becoming a mother like budget planning and time management. Both Belinda and Sarah went above and beyond for me, and I will forever be grateful for that and cannot thank them enough!”

“My team at ALC is very supportive and understanding of my family commitments. I’ve just been promoted to a full-time role as their Vocational Training Mentor. This is fantastic as it will help me be more secure financially so my son and I can move out of my parents’ house.”

It’s NAIDOC Week 4 – 11 July, a time to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. This years theme is Heal Country! It calls for stronger measures to recognise, protect, and maintain all aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and heritage.