Emotion stirs in Bebe’s voice. “I was homeless for three years. I lost everything and all I had was my children.”
Since moving to Australia from Ghana over 10 years ago, Bebe has faced many obstacles. After escaping an abusive relationship, Bebe struggled to put a roof over her family.
But she’s an overcomer. And throughout all her struggles, her children have always been her priority. Every step Bebe takes contributes towards rebuilding her life for her family.
“I try to be strong for my children,” Bebe says. “I’m trying to earn a good living for my family.”
It’s Bebe’s resilience that keeps her going. And when Bebe met Amy, an Employment Coach for Wesley Mission’s Opportunity Pathways, this strength shone through. The program provides people like Bebe access to training and work experience to help achieve their career and housing goals.
“Bebe’s primary focus has always been to support her family and to be the best parent possible. I believe Bebe’s strong family values are what fuel her to focus on the future and to reach her goals,” Amy says.
Bebe’s drive to change her circumstances is combined with a passion to help people. Amy is supporting Bebe with training opportunities to achieve her dream of becoming a nurse. Bebe is looking to enrol in a Diploma of Nursing in 2021.
“They’re there for me, they help me emotionally. They always come around to talk with me and they’re helping me with some training to get a job. They asked me what I want to do, what I want in five years and what I want to achieve with my life,” Bebe says.
But most importantly, Bebe says she’s grateful for the support to find a job. “They helped me edit my resume and they went ahead applying for jobs for me,” she says. “If I was to do that all by myself, I would be stressed every day. They gave me that emotional support.”
Bebe now works part-time at Warrigal retirement and aged care centre and enjoys every moment. “I love helping. Each time I go to work and I meet different residents, we click very well,” she says. “I love making them happy and it makes me feel good as well.”
Amy is also supporting Bebe with First Aid training, mental health training and driving lessons. Once Bebe gains her licence, Amy says a world of job opportunities will open, so Bebe can apply for another job to better financially support her family. Bebe hopes her next role will involve helping people with disability.
During the season of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Bebe says Wesley Mission have gone the extra mile to make sure her family’s needs are met. Amy partnered with Wesley Operation Hope to deliver essential food packs once a week to Bebe’s family.
“Throughout this pandemic, they really helped me a lot,” Bebe explains. “They continued helping me every day with food and everything I need for my family. I would not know what I would have done without them.
“After helping me get a job, they always make sure I have transportation to my workplace. They even bought a computer to assist with my studies.”
While Bebe still has a long road ahead to achieve her goal of becoming a nurse, it’s her tenacity and determination that will help her secure the future she wants.
“I feel right now things are slowly getting back together, piece-by-piece. And I’m hoping to achieve more growth in the future,” she says.
Amy adds, “She’s so hard-working. I can just see her go from strength to strength. She’s willing to overcome any kind barrier to make sure she’s working to support her family.”