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Skip Navigation LinksDepartment of Housing and Public Works > Housing > Homelessness > Homelessness Week > Homelessness Prevention Week 2015 > Case studies > Jon's story

Jon's story

Jon has big dreams for his future.

Fuelled by a love of food, cooking and the joy such things bring, the 17-year-old from Townsville in North Queensland envisages a career as chef and owner of a successful Italian restaurant.

But Jon only has to look back two years to find his life heading in a very different direction.

“I was in Grafton (in New South Wales) and had been homeless for a couple of years and getting in with the wrong crowd,” he said.

“I had so many dreams … so I made the decision to move to Townsville and live with my dad.”

While living with his father wasn’t the solution, the change in environment and renewed focus on his goals enabled Jon to connect with youth care provider headspace and crisis accommodation centre Share House.

“Share House was absolutely amazing,” Jon said.

“They put a roof over my head, helped me with food vouchers, transport and access to job agencies and training.

“I couldn’t have asked for more.”

Armed with stability, confidence and new skills, Jon found full-time work in the hospitality sector, earning a good wage while gaining valuable experience towards his chosen profession.

Today, he lives in and maintains a private rental, and is undertaking an online course in business management.

“I’m getting my dreams done,” he said.

“I want to be a chef and own my own Italian restaurant and I’ll work hard at any (pathway) to that.”

Jon’s advice for young people experiencing difficulties at home or at school is to be proactive.

“The one thing I learnt from being homeless is that if you don’t do it, nothing will be done,” he said.

“You can’t sit around waiting for it to happen. The help is there, but you’ve got to reach out and take it.”

Last updated 28 October 2015    Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

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