Jennifer* was referred to Mission Australia's Triple Care Farm by her Juvenile Justice Officer. She arrived covered in bruises from living on the streets, relieved to finally be in a safe place where she was no longer frightened to walk around by herself.
Jennifer had also spent some time in a detention facility and had recently disclosed that she had been enduring physical abuse perpetrated by her mother. At the assessment, Jennifer stated that she wanted to “clean up her life” and show Mum that she had achieved something.
During the time that Jennifer was at the Farm she built her self-esteem through counselling and achieving in challenging activities such as rock climbing and caving. During her case management time Jennifer worked on interview skills, resume writing and how to go about seeking work. Jennifer is now employed on a permanent part time basis and is attending TAFE to complete her School Certificate.
During counselling Jennifer was able to work through some of the abuse and neglect that was haunting her and take her life under her own control. This was one of Jennifer’s comments when she left Triple Care Farm:
“I learnt that my life is worth living and that I can say no to drugs and make better choices”
For six months after graduation, the Farm supported Jennifer in the community, assisting her to find access to private accommodation, which was a difficult process as she had no references and was looking to live on her own for the first time. It was a great day when she secured a granny flat in the area she wanted. Soon after, the Farm assisted her to enrol in TAFE in order to attain her Year 10 certificate. During her studies Jennifer also linked up with Mission Employment to do a job seeking course and found casual employment in retail.
Jennifer is now living independently, working part-time, healthy, and attending TAFE. After completing her School Certificate Jennifer hopes to complete studies in child care and work with children.
Jennifer has visited the farm since graduating from the program to offer encouragement to others. Although the time that Jennifer spent at Triple Care Farm cannot undo her negative experiences from the past, she now uses those experiences to remind herself of her own strength and determination to get through the hard times, knowing that Triple Care Farm is always there for support when she needs it.
*Name has been changed to protect the student’s privacy