What I like about my community is its spirit. In times of need, we all come together to support one-another; like during a cyclone, flooding, sick or hurt kids and even important festivals.
Unfortunately our community also has its problems. Some of these are like young kids wandering the streets or not enough after school job opportunities for our children and young people. I believe that young people can talk to other people like adults and their school student council about these things. As they are our future leaders, they need to have a say in what happens as the adults that make decisions can’t always tell what is the best for them or know exactly what they need. I believe it is important that young people should have their say in the decisions that impact them.
What I see as important in being a leader, is the small things that some people might not recognise that make a big difference. These include empathy, taking initiative and being a team player as these qualities make a big difference on how a leader might act or help make changes to those around them. My leadership qualities include, organisation, strong initiative, I’m a team player and a good listener. I believe I am a pragmatist and will always accept others' ideas if they make more sense or are better than my own. I’ve learnt throughout my leadership career to be solution focused. When I leave school, I would like to join the Australian Defense Force as a way of using my qualities and fulfilling my potential.
My leadership story begins in primary school where I was as a student councillor. It is here that I was first taught what is required to be a fair leader and a good team player. In Year 6 I was the school's Faction Vice Captain and this taught me some more skills such as organisation, being on time and being prepared to give things a go even if you think you can’t do it. Then high school came along with its own challenges. During high school I tried to help my teachers and volunteer for any types of leadership opportunities. I also joined the Australian Army Cadets. Since I’ve joined I’ve climbed the ranks to Corporal where I teach other Cadets lessons. I’ve learnt so much here, like listening to other ideas and questions, using my initiative and actively looking for solutions when problems occur.
Recently I’ve joined the Country Youth Ambulance officer program that has taught me how to communicate with not only patients but with other members and at the same time I’m doing community service hours to go and do the Leeuwin Ocean Adventure under a scholarship. Once again I am a student councillor this year, and I have been communicating with my fellow students in coming up with ways to help improve the school or help with the current issues we all face.
My advice to the young people or the future leaders is this: Join in. Make the effort to be a part of your community. Join clubs, volunteer and do community service, help out at community events and look for leadership type jobs or roles that others might not consider to do. Remember that you are valued for your contributions to your community as an active citizen. Recently I went to get my resume done at Epic. They said “this was the best resume for a 17 year-old and it is clear that though your commitment to your community and your strong desire to contribute and support others that you have demonstrated your capacity to provide leadership for other young people”. My primary school principals, Miss Hobart and Miss MacCauley and many other teachers have said that I have the potential to go places.
My advice to other leaders is that there are solutions for cross-cultural communities like after school jobs for all young people or even town basketball competitions i.e. Roebourne night time basketball (currently run by Roebourne police). Another idea is that NAIDOC should be celebrated with more integration and more than one day in schools that then give more understanding of the local culture and a learning opportunity. But without communication and teamwork we can’t work towards a better future so as long we work together and not against each other we can make a difference in this world.