Youth Engagement

Did you end up in the career that you thought you would? For Eddie Nsanzimana the Youth Engagement worker at Grampians Community Health the advice of his teacher provided all the impetus he need to go down a path he’d never considered.

“I was just one of those kids at school, doing a VET course in year 11 and thinking I was going to be a tradie.” said Eddie.

The teacher must have seen something in Eddie as when they were at a Careers Expo she said, “Eddie, why don’t you go introduce yourself to the youth team at Grampians Community Health’s NEXUS program, and see if they might take you on board for work placement”.

“I went over and met the guys from Nexus and then started doing my work placement” said Eddie.

Nexus, the Grampians Community Health Youth Centre ran several events throughout the year in which Eddie participated. A camp for multicultural youth to create groups to help kids from their varied backgrounds to fit into the local community is what excited Eddie to get involved as a career.

Eddie got together with the young people and started planning the ‘Young G’ group and having meetings at Nexus.

With the support of the team at Nexus they organised an event for Harmony day and had about 60 or 70 kids show up, and it was a huge success. This event was the turning point for Eddie, “that’s what I want to do, my heart is set to do youth stuff” he said.

“Without the support of GCH staff, Jodie and Alois none of this would have been possible. They have support me a lot through the past two years, and they have shaped the person I have become, so I’m grateful that I met them in that cold winter day in June 2014 at the Career Expo, and now I wouldn’t change it for the word”, Eddie proudly said.

Mr Greg Little, Chief Executive Officer of Grampians Community Health, said, “it is a genuine win-win outcome, we are fortunate to have Eddie working with us, and he tells me that he feels lucky and fortunate that GCH was able to give him a chance as a trainee.”

Eddie also said that “it has been amazing, how young people can develop their skills through initiatives such as the Nexus café. From this experience, they now have enough confidence to find work in the hospitality industry”.

Eddies traineeship finished and he is rightly proud of the Diploma of Community Services he received through the Sunraysia Institute. He is now a fully-fledged Youth Engagement Worker with GCH and wants to continue to drive Young G and make it bigger.

Mr Little said often the young people from Horsham accessing Nexus programs don’t play sport and there is also a large mix of young people from multicultural backgrounds that don’t have the money for school camps, and sports. NEXUS programs are able to give this cohort opportunities to go up to the mountains for walks, go to camps, and participate in events where they can learn new skills.

“We are really pleased that Eddie has continued on his path as a youth engagement worker with Grampians Community Health, he has not only shown that anything is possible with his hard work, but is also able to model that to the young people he works with” said Mr Little.

Anyone wishing to access any of the Grampians Community Health services can easily do so by calling 5358 7400.

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