Program Participant's Stories
A young at-risk person of aboriginal heritage was referred to our Self-esteem & Leadership Camp. Per advice from his guidance counsellor, he had been with a number of foster families.
It quickly became clear that the Daniel had never had any boundaries set. He initially acted in such a disruptive and adverse manner at camp to have the other camp participants ask for his removal on the very first day. Our staff and volunteers handled the situation, working in close cooperation with his indigenous day carer/counsellor. The change was remarkable.
On the final day of camp, when his carer mentioned they had to leave early, Daniel's attitude had changed so much that all of the other young people voted to have him stay on to the end of the camp.
At our final group gathering, he asked permission to give a thank-you speech. During the speech he admitted that this was the first time in his life that he had ever had the courage to speak in front of others, and expressed his gratitude for our persisting with him to let him stay, despite the extremely bad start.
At our awards night later that year, we learned that he had been reunited with his birth mother, and was doing well at school. The risk of his deterioration into further anti-social behaviour was clearly reduced.
Elle came to us with her attitude and performance at school having taken a backwards step after her parents marriage had broken down.
She slowly began to open up during her camp weekend, and started to lead during the group activities.
After the program, her school principal advised us that her performance in-class had significantly improved, she had begun to speak out in class, and that she was having a positive effect on her entire class by passing on some of the principles and ways-of-conduct taught in our programs.
She was honoured with the receipt of our Female Leadership Award at annual presentation night.
She was subsequently given the opportunity to participate at one of our Senior Leadership Camps.
Subsequent reports indicate that she is likely to be an extremely positive role model in any future community (school or other) that she becomes involved in and, against all previous expectations, was reported to be doing extremely well with her studies in high school.
Letter from Bob Atkinson - Qld Chief Commissioner of Police 20.11.2011
The Queensland Police Service recognises the important contribution that non-profit organisations like New Beginnings make towards the reduction of anti-social behaviour amongst young people.
I would like to commend your organisation on your efforts in working with young people and wish you all the best for the continued success of your programs.