Image Alt

Success stories

Stories of students


Sarah Rinaldi

Sarah, a 19 year old client with limited employment skills, came to Youth Projects for support in 2016. Sarah was unemployed and had fallen out of previous jobs quickly and felt isolated from employment opportunities due to her location in Sunbury, and lack of public transport options from this area..Sarah had a difficult time in school and, as a result, lacked a lot of confidence.

“At school I was bullied by other students, people younger than me as well as parents and teachers….the teachers would always say to me that I wasn’t going to succeed in life. And, I started to believe it.”

Sarah initially came to Youth Projects for her Centrelink in exchange for her Centrelink payment.

“I first came to Youth Projects because of Centrelink. I thought it would just be one of those things that I had to do to earn my benefits. But, it turned out to be one of the best things that I have ever done in my life.”

Sarah was supported intensively by her Transitions Coach in one-on-one appointments and she was encouraged to get involved with the group activities that Youth Projects offer. Sarah participated in various training programs within Youth Projects, including the YP Employment Bootcamp – which provided training in job skills, pre-employment skills interview techniques along with providing connections with peers. Sarah also completed 3 accredited training qualifications in Food Handling, OH&S and Barista. Through this training, Sarah developed a passion for coffee and customer service.

“Participating in all of the training with Youth Projects helped me massively to build up my confidence. I felt great – so I started to apply for jobs and attend interviews. The support from the Youth Projects team really helped me to move forward with my life goals.”

“Youth Projects treated me as an individual, and didn’t make me feel like I was just another young person looking for work. I was someone who needed help, and they wanted to help me. I am so glad that I got involved with them!”

Sarah was offered a customer service/barista traineeship at the Good2Go Social enterprise café in Melbourne CBD.  For the last 14 months, she has applied her skills acquired through intensive support and training to serve customers, make coffee for the Melbourne masses, prepare food and handle cash.

Recently, Sarah has become a spokesperson for the organisation – talking to various groups, tourists and schools to share her journey with getting her life back  on track.

“None of this would have been possible without Youth Projects. I feel so lucky to have been linked up with them for support and guidance. I feel so confident about my future now!”