JACK grew up in Melbourne, but when their family decided to relocate interstate to the local community of Nambucca Heads on the Mid North Coast, they had to leave the city life behind.
Moving to a new town, in a new state, where they didn't know anyone caused Jack to feel isolated and anxious.
Jack is a part of the LGBQT+ community and identifies as being a non-binary person, preferring to be referred to using the pronouns they/them/theirs.
The increased anxiety triggered a verbal tic, which worsens when they are stressed or meeting new people.
"The tics are really recent, I've had physical tics for a long time, but I haven't had verbal versions. They have gotten a lot worse since moving here because I stopped talking to people and reclused," Jack said.
Before their move, Jack was linked with ETC's TtW Program for support and started phone appointments with Youth Advisor Tracy Pocock.
Tracy began working with Jack to assess their skills, barriers and goals moving forward.
"The biggest issue for me is that I have a lot of anxiety, hence the tics. Handing out my Resume and attending interviews became a trigger," Jack said.
"So, I decided to try to get more sociable jobs, to normalize situations and become more confident in speaking."
I think from a Youth Advisors' point of view; we don't see anxiety as a barrier. We see it as a roadblock that we eventually will get through.Tracy Pocock
Jack knew breaking through his anxiety cycle would make it easier to find work and meet people in the long term.
"I think from a Youth Advisors' point of view; we don't see anxiety as a barrier. We see it as a roadblock that we eventually will get through," Tracy said.
Tracy introduced Jack to ETC Business Relationship Advisor Kylie Mears, and together they started looking for employment opportunities.
Then a possible traineeship came up with the Nambucca Youth Services Centre, The Youthie.
The Youthie has helped Jack make more friends and meet like-minded people in the Nambucca Heads community.
Jack is powering through their Certificate III in Business and overcoming their anxiety barriers in leaps and bounds.
In the future, Jack would like to create more awareness around the barriers they have had to overcome and to help other people in the same position.
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