People who have spent time at Stewart House often reflect on what it meant to them and sometimes they let us in on their insights.
My name is Amy and I grew up in Mt. Druitt. During my primary school years life was a challenge and being the eldest of 5 kids it often fell on my shoulders to help out with the young ones.
Going on a holiday was something which was what my friends did, not me!
When I was offered the opportunity to attend Stewart House in 2000, I was excited but also extremely nervous.
The beach is what I saw on Home and Away not across the road from my bedroom!
My time at Stewart House created some of the happiest memories of my childhood.
Meeting new kids, and being in the older girls’ dorm was something which excited me and made me feel special and like I belonged. I was afforded opportunities I never could have dreamed of.
The day excursions, a special trip to Sega World, going to the filming of a music television show and seeing the band Killing Heidi absolutely blew my mind. It enabled me to understand what opportunities in life I could have.
After my time at Stewart House I had a new found desire to work hard to create a life which allowed me to have such special experiences.
Fast forward 18 years and the shy Year 6 girl from Rooty Hill Primary School has completed her HSC, obtained a nursing certificate, completed a double degree (Bachelor of Teaching/Bachelor of Arts (Primary) and is teaching primary school students in Victoria and encouraging them to believe in themselves just as the mentors at Stewart House did for me.
The thing I find sad about living in Victoria is that students here don’t have access to an amazing program like Stewart House. I am grateful to have been part of such an inspiring and giving program.