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Celebrating Youth Week with Co-Responder Isiah

It’s Queensland Youth Week and to celebrate we sat down with Outreach Co-Responder Isiah to talk about his role and the positive impact our ATSICHS Youth teams have on our young people.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I’m a young, outspoken man that enjoys and also thrives on making change in the community. I have connections to the Iman, Gungarri and Gudjala tribes and a passion for working with mob and guiding our next generation into being a better version of themselves. They are our next leaders, so I believe it’s very important to help them grow up strong. 

I spent most of my childhood in my Mum’s hometown of Charters Towers, west of Townsville on Gudgala Country. My Dad is part of the Iman mob from Woorabinda, inland from Rockhampton.

How long have you been at ATSICHS Brisbane?

I’ve been at ATSICHS Brisbane for the past 14 months and can see myself here for quite some time. 

What prompted you to work here?

I chose to work at ATSICHS Brisbane because I wanted to make a difference in the community. Here I’m able to work for our mob with the resources behind me to make a real change. The work we do here is so powerful and I’m grateful to be a part of it.

Can you tell us about an average day in your role?

In Outreach, no two days are the same. You never really know how the night is going to play out, but that’s one of the best parts about working in this space. Every night we head out into the CBD and engage with our young people. We divert them out of the city as much as we can, but we also make a difference just by being a support person, someone they can count on at night.

We’re role models they can look up to and also a regular face they know they can see five nights a week. They come to trust and rely on us and that’s where we can really make a change in their lives. By building those relationships and being there for these young people consistently, the interventions and diversions we lay out for them really stick. We also do referrals to other youth organisations that can benefit our young people and build relationships with other stakeholders in the Brisbane city region.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding thing about my job is knowing that our young people are being supported and given opportunities to grow and become the greatest they can be.

How had working in Outreach impacted you personally?

Working in the Outreach team has changed my perspective a lot. I’ve always been passionate about making a difference in community and seeing these vulnerable young people that need support out on the streets has only made that feeling stronger. Working in this space has made me want to stick around and help every young person I can.

How does ATSICHS Brisbane support the goals of Queensland Youth Week?

Here at ATSICHS, we work hard to ensure young people are supported through all different avenues. Whether that’s family support, getting back to school or being supported with housing. We really make sure our young people are taken care of. Our ATSICHS youth teams celebrate all our young people’s achievements, big or small and you can see the impact that has on these young people’s lives.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

I enjoy catching up with mates for a BBQ, going to the beach and relaxing at home.

If you were an animal, which animal would you be and why?

I would like to be an eagle, so that I could see life from a different perspective.

If you could have dinner with one person dead or alive, who would it be and why?

I’d have dinner with my grandmother, so she could make her famous rice pudding for me one last time.

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