Maria's Story

Having lived in many different places, I moved to Marrickville in 2005. I have two daughters and my eldest, Gloria, would be starting primary school in 2006 so with this in mind we visited Marrickville West Primary School.
Ms Ling our school's principal provided all the information we needed and as part of the school tour, took us to 'Connect Marrickville', which is a school as Community centre within Marrickville West Public. Connect has many different programs but we began our journey attending the Friday Playgroup.
The playgroup allowed my daughters to socialise with other children and get use to the school as well as providing me with the opportunity to meet, and later on develop friendship with other parents within our school community. I volunteered and helped in the playgroup and discovered I loved working with children so enrolled in a Playgroup facilitator course, which was one of 'Connect’s' TAFE Outreach programs.
I am now studying at TAFE the Diploma in Children's Services and working as playgroup co-facilitator for 'Connect'. 'Connect Marrickville' has changed my family's life by providing my daughters with a smooth transition from home to school and me with the self-confidence to take on study as an adult and build many wonderful friendships in our multicultural community.

Abdul's Story

One year ago I was struggling to finish my HSC at Granville Boys High School. I was already part of the Auburn Community Development Network (ACDN) when I got selected to be part of a new project Dream Big, that helped young people think about coming up with a social enterprise that they wanted to do. We were asked to Dream Big and all ten of us decided that we wanted to start an events management business especially one that helps out other young people get experience and jobs and work with communities. 
Part of the project was to get training so ACDN organised with TAFE outreach for us all to do practical training and we had a TAFE teacher come out to ACDN where we are based and designed a special accredited training for us doing a Certificate 3 in Events Management so after we completed the training at ACDN we would get a certificate that would allow us to go straight into a Diploma in Events Management as long as we did the last subject of the certificate in TAFE and that's what I decided to do. 
I finished my HSC finally at the same time as doing the training at ACDN with TAFE and was designing and managing events and I got more out of the practical side of training than I did at school. I really had no idea what I was going to do when I was in high school and until I got to be part of Eventasia Enterprises, that's the name of our social enterprise, I was lost. 
I love being at TAFE and doing the Diploma and I finish it in two months and hopefully by then we will get more work through Eventasia Enterprises which is available to help you out at any time by the way at any time. TAFE really did save me and if it doesn't have the funding to do what it does best like help people like me then I feel sorry for the young people who who are lost and looking for something meaningful to do with their lives. 
I am not a number at TAFE. I am a person who had a hard past and a bright future. Thanks.