Allan 56, a former truck driver, injured himself on the job and was sent to Olympic Adult Education by a work rehabilitation service after identifying that he wanted to improve his literacy. The death of his mother when he was a young child had really impacted on his education and he wanted a second chance at improving his writing and general education.
He really enjoyed his time in the classes. Before coming to Olympic Adult Education he had hardly touched a computer but he used one regularly to write and for research for his class activities.
Allan was named Student of the Year and had his first attempt at public speaking at our annual certificate ceremony. He also enjoyed being the MC at our Annual General Meeting the following year.
Allan returned to work when he commenced at the Austin Hospital Supply Department. Allan came back to see if he could continue with his classes while working. He said, “ironically, would you believe, I am doing data entry on the computer as part of my job.”
Sam’s Story in Sam’s Words
My name is Samuel. I really enjoy coming to Olympic Adult Education and I have learnt a lot.
I am studying maths and have learnt to subtract, add, divide, and multiply numbers. Using maths for stuff like shopping. For example like working out half price off the normal price. And then I worked out 10%, 20% and 30% off the price for homework. We also started this term a footy tipping competition in maths class.
I have learnt how to use a computer in English class, how to use the internet and how to do Google searches to find out information. Olympic Adult Education being easily accessible by public transport has made my life easier.
I have also met a lot of new friends and the teachers are always happy and would like a chat.
I like when I am trying something new and I like it when I get good feedback from my teachers. The teachers also enjoy when some of the students help other students. And there is always a good atmosphere at Olympic Adult Education.
The highlight of last year was when the whole school of Olympic Adult Education went to Puffing Billy. It was great day out because visiting Puffing Billy has always been one of my dreams.
Amanda wanted to become a childcare worker. She knew she needed to read and write better so she enrolled in a literacy class at Olympic Adult Education. She enjoyed getting to know new people and made friends in her class.
In 2005 she participated in the Introduction to Community and Event Volunteering at our centre. The course helped people apply for volunteer positions for the Commonwealth Games and taught customer service and team work skills.
Amanda was given a position at UAC the Uniform Accreditation Centre giving out volunteer uniforms for the Commonwealth Games. At first she found getting to the shifts at early hours difficult but that in the end she asked for extra shifts because she loved it so much. She spoke at our AGM about her volunteer experience. “I really enjoyed doing the volunteer work because it gave me the confidence to do whatever I want in life“. Her new confidence was very evident to staff and students who had been part of her learning journey at Olympic Adult Education.
Still set on her original goal she continued with her reading and writing, maths and computer classes then and when my teacher Natalie thought I was ready to do the Childcare course – I applied.
Three wonderful volunteers gave Amanda extra support with her literacy in class and she graduated from the Certificate III in Children’s Services.
I loved doing the course and learning about all the stuff that you need to know. I couldn’t wait to finish so I could look for jobs. The teachers Helen, Susan, Natalie and Lilly and my helpers Jan, Helen and Dana were very helpful and I would like to thank them for helping me.
After I finished I looked on the internet for Childcare jobs. I saw the ABC Learning Centres and I applied. They got back to me and I went for the interview. They accepted me for relief work. I am also looking for full-time work.
I am Janelle and I live in West Heidelberg. I originally came to Olympic Adult Education to the Movement to Music classes and then continued into art classes.
Last year I did the Certificate I in Horticulture . I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of my classes. I learnt so much more than I expected to.
The day trips and other learning skills I did with Bridget, my teacher and the other students, gave me ideas about looking into continuing studies in horticulture or gardening design courses for this year.
I got permission from the Wesley Linlithgow Multicultural Centre in Ivanhoe to continue with the gardening chores that my classmates and I started doing last year during the course.
I kept in contact with a few of my classmates over the Christmas break; I went and saw their gardens or places where they work.
I have been doing volunteer gardening at Rosanna Fire Station Community House for 3 years now. Last year I helped create a meditation garden and this year I am helping maintain it. I have also been helping at Viewbank Primary School with watering their garden.
At the moment I’m doing Maths and Literacy classes here and I am helping with the garden at 233 Southern Road.
I have loved plants and gardening my whole life and I thank Olympic Adult Education for running the Horticulture course.
Growing up, l didn’t know where l belonged because l had a lot of problems at school due to my deafness. I never wanted to be a deaf person and always tried to make out that l could hear.
In the early 90’s l became very sick with Ramsay Hunt Syndrome and got hooked on prescription tablets. l ended up being in my little own world, sleeping my life away.
A drug counsellor at Banyule Community Health Service suggested I go to a detox centre. Afterwards she asked me what I would like to do with my life. When l told her that I had been given me a new computer and didn’t have a clue how to use it she suggested I do a computer course at Olympic Adult Education to which I replied, “What? At my age?”
I enrolled in a 9 week class but ended up joining the reading and writing and the editorial classes because I liked it so much.
In the same year I took on some volunteer roles driving the health centre bus, being a volunteer tutor for the Special Needs class at OAE and I joined the Committee of Management. Now l do a volunteer admistration /courier job for Banyule Community Health service and I still get to see all the friends I have made at Olympic Adult Education because we are in the same building.
I would not be here if it wasn’t for Banyule Community Health and Olympic Adult Education. Now I am happy with my life and my deafness doesn’t worry me anymore.
Recipes From the Heart
From the Heart: Recipes and Stories was officially launched in February 2010 by Joe Caputo.
The project involved about 50 local women with up to 12 women at any one time coming together for a cooking session in our new community kitchen.
Women from different cultural backgrounds took turns showing each other how to prepare favourite recipes from their countries. It was very exciting and heartwarming to watch and be part of. Afterwards the women sat and shared the meal together. It really was magic.
The project was funded by the Victorian Multicultural Commission.
The recipe book project would not have been possible without our new Community Kitchen at 233 Southern Road. The extension which included the kitchen was jointly funded by Department of Planning and Community (Modernising Neighbourhoood House Grant), Neighbourhood Renewal, Banyule City Council and the Banyule Watsonia RSL Trust. The kitchen equipment was purchased with money from the East Ivanhoe Bendigo Community Bank.
We would like to acknowledge and thank them and promise that more magic will be cooked up in our new kitchen.