13 September 2022

With a bit of hard work and support, James learned how to manage his finances and buy his dream car.

Teenage boy siting in the driver's seat of a silver car.

James' story is told by his support person, Angela.

Transitioning from residential care into adulthood can be very daunting for young people. To bridge the gap between care and adulthood, Life Without Barriers’ Supported Independent Living Service supports young people to build their independence and prepare for this transition.

James* a young person we support, transitioned into Life Without Barriers’ supported living late last year from a 24/7 residential care program.

When James first moved in, he had some difficulties adjusting. However, through the program, James was given the opportunity to make choices and decisions for himself and he soon came to flourish. He started attending school full-time, made sure he kept on top of his schoolwork, and he got a part-time job.

“James was really empowered by being given the freedom of choice on his own, but also knowing he had support for this from our staff to call on if he needed,” said Angela Nelson, Program Manager – Residential and SILS, Child Youth and Family.

One way the Care Team supports young people to prepare for adulthood is through goal setting. James is a huge car lover and the first goal he identified was to get his licence and buy his first car.

“James was incredibly motivated to achieve this goal. Whenever he wasn’t at school he was at work. He even worked through the school holidays!” said Angela.

James worked hard and it wasn’t long until he was able to get his licence and buy his first car. With the support of his Care Team, he completed the road-worthy check, registered his vehicle and got behind the wheel.

James’ next goal was to work towards an even better car. Over five months he worked really hard to save his money for his dream car. Once he hit the goal amount, he sold his first car and purchased an upgrade.

“James was super excited when I picked him up from school. He told me how much he could not wait to pick up his car,” said Suzi Nwoye, Youth Worker.

“We laughed as he spoke about how much he hated having to catch public transport since selling his previous car, so he was super stoked to be back behind the wheel.

“Achieving this goal is a real demonstration of how far James has come in terms of reaching his goals and managing his finances.”

Now that James has achieved his goal of buying his dream car, his next goal is to secure housing.

“Being supported to achieve success and being given high expectation messaging by the SILS team has really built James’ confidence and self-efficacy,” said Angela.

“James has really demonstrated, through his determination and amazing achievements, that when he transitions to independence next year, he will go on to do absolutely brilliantly.”

A person's story is precious. We take storytelling seriously. Sometimes people are able to tell their own story and we love that. We always make sure they give us their ok and we will always honour the trust placed in us to bring their story forward.

*Names have been changed to protect the children in this story.

Child, Youth and Family

Our Foster Care, residential care and after care services provide a safe and supportive environment where they can heal and grow.

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