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Marisola’s journey: one womans commitment to change the future for herself and her family.

Marisola’s story is an inspirational tale of how training can turn your life around. Marisola came to Australia with her young family from the Philippines in 2012. As a newly arrived immigrant, she had very little English and had never worked in her home country because she was busy raising her children and caring for the family. When she arrived in Sydney though, she realised pretty quickly that life in Australia wasn’t going to be easy on a single salary so she set up to find some work.

She was able to find a job as a personal carer at a nearby residential facility. “I had never even been inside a nursing home before and I had no idea what to expect,” she says but after working with there for a couple of years she felt she found the ideal job. “I love what I do,” said Marisola when she first applied to complete a qualification “caring for people is the most rewarding job anyone can do”.

Marisola’s first step in her educational journey was to complete the entry-level Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015). “I knew this was what I wanted to do but I wasn’t sure what it would be like to study in Australia because I didn’t go to school here but the staff at National College Australia made me feel so comfortable from the beginning. I told them I couldn’t use the computer to study so they sent me books!”. After Marisola completed her first qualification with us, she stayed with the same workplace and then contacted her Coordinator again one day “my boss has given me more responsibility at work, I’m doing more now and I think I need to study some more”. We suggested that she do the next level up to give her the specialist knowledge she would need so she enrolled in the Certificate IV in Ageing Support (CHC43015).

“I didn’t get the same assessor for my second course but she was just as helpful as the first one. I still got the same support and attention from everyone at the College through which was why I went back to NCA. In that year, I had to go back to the Philippines to visit my parents for about two months and they delivered my books much earlier so I could take them with me!” Even though I have never met the staff at the College in person, I feel I know them like I know my own work friends”.

Finally, when we asked Marisola what is was about aged care that has kept her so motivated, “working in aged care just started off as a job for me because I needed to work”, she said “but now it is more than just a job, it has given my life a new purpose. The residents depend on me for many things that the rest of us just take for granted. I left my ageing parents behind and my sister is now caring for them. I wish I could have been there for them but caring other people’s parents are just as important to me.

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