When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Emma was young, angry and homeless.
She was barely attending school following a series of suspensions for fighting and was splitting her time between couch surfing and emergency housing. Bright, energetic and ambitious, she knew she wanted a job, independence and a home.
“But I didn’t know how to get there,” she explains, “(so) I just got more heavily into drugs.”
But with the onset of COVID, she was in danger of losing housing completely.
Tumbelin staff worked with Emma to secure safe accommodation for her throughout the restrictions. They supported her to create the routine she craved and soon she was able to fulfil the requirements for independent housing.
“If I didn’t have that routine, I wouldn’t have got my house so fast. Lucy and Jodi really helped me focus and re-set. Tumbelin was always something to look forward to. I was challenged to do the things I needed to do, but didn’t want to!”
Emma also flourished in the adventure component of the program; channelling her energy into more productive activities such as snorkelling, bush walking, fishing and camping.
“(For me) learning about the Compass of Shame was really good. I understand more now about why people react like they do and what they’re feeling. It helped me understand how my parents are acting and why. I just have a better understanding of people.”
Today, Emma has significantly reduced her cannabis use, and completed Certificate II in Kitchen Operations where she discovered a passion for cooking. She’s pursuing a career in hospitality and has recently started a traineeship with a local business!
No longer roaming the streets at night, Emma’s focused on creating a life for herself.
“I have inspiration now…I’ve learned to calm down and re-focus. I can see other people’s perspectives better…I’ve discovered so many places around here I never knew existed. I loved the adventures… I feel a lot better. I have a good new friend who is supportive, a job, a house and even a kitten!”