JB: finding her feet
JB is a young woman from Brisbane who has experienced homelessness and struggled to become independent. Here she talks of how Brisbane Youth Service (BYS) helped her create a new life.
“I was living on friends’ couches and feeling like a burden on them and their families. I couldn’t return home as my mother was emotionally abusive towards me and I never felt I had a voice or was listened to. I ran out of couches to sleep on and I decided I needed more help so I searched the internet and found BYS.
“I attended BYS scared and pretty depressed. The staff were great. They spoke to me with respect and understood me. I felt like I had a voice for the first time and I was being heard. In a short time they were able to house me with a place at PIF House in Brisbane. This is a transitional independent house which I share with two other young people.
“I had very few independent living skills but my housing support worker at BYS was so helpful. I remember calling him every day at the beginning of my tenancy and he always listened and helped me when I needed it the most. BYS advocated for me, taught me how to research and find my own resources, and even communicated with my house mates when we disagreed with each other. The support BYS provided me to talk with my family again was really useful. I had felt I was not going to be able to see my family again but always felt a big piece of me was missing because of this separation.
“I have now completed the original goals I set with my BYS worker and I feel so empowered and accomplished as now I am independent, my life has stability and my mental health is consistent. It’s amazing how powerful my voice is now as I can ask questions and go anywhere and feel recognised when I visit my family home.
“I am now looking into studying real estate as I have been working part time as a receptionist at a real estate firm. I have support from my family and my partner’s family now. This has been such a journey and I feel a sense of accomplishment.”
Brisbane Youth Services (BYS) has been a Charity Partner of the Property Industry Foundation since 2013. Over the years the Foundation has provided volunteers and funding to BYS to assist them in their vital work. It’s an example of the support the Foundation provides to help rebuild young lives.
*Photo changed to protect identity.