When your dream job is a highly sought-after role, you need to be strategic and diligent if you are going to make it happen. Sally has dreamed of becoming a veterinary nurse since at least her late teens, but she is a realist. She knows she will not achieve that goal without working hard and having a great plan.

Our team in Cessnock, who deliver services for the ParentsNext program, assisted Sally in pursuing her employment goals. With the youngest of her three children about to turn six, she is proud of what she has achieved so far, working in tandem with her Bamara Support Mentors.

“I’ve been a home parent for a lot of years now, but since Centrelink contacted me to get involved with ParentsNext, it’s been really good.

“I’ve always had a goal to do vet nursing but it’s really hard to get your foot in the door,” says Sally.

“I didn’t know how to go about it, where to look for advice and help. The Support Mentors at Bamara have helped me work it out every step of the way.

“I started by going to TAFE to get my Certificate II in Animal Studies. That took approximately six months. I moved up and did a Certificate III in Companion Animal Services, which was scheduled for 12 months but dragged out longer because of Covid.

“To get into the Vet Nursing course, I had to find a work placement. That is one of the requirements. Vet nursing is such a high demand occupation, so many people want to do it, it’s hard getting that placement.

“My Support Mentor Craig helped me make it happen. He knew somebody who worked at a vet clinic and had a chat with her for me. That got the ball rolling, and I got work placement through Bamara that way. I was so excited!”

Sally attends her work placement one day per week and attends TAFE on two other days. There are assessments to complete at home as well, plus three children to look after.

“It’s full-on, but I’m enjoying it,” Sally said.

“Bamara has always been supportive. My Mum is a huge help with the kids, and my Bamara Support Mentors are helping me reach my work goals. Sometimes you just need that bit of help to get to where you want to be.

“Vet nursing is hard work both mentally and physically, but so worth it. I find the training and the work experience rewarding and satisfying and can’t wait to make this my job. The kids are really proud of me. It’s going to mean a lot to them once I’m officially qualified.

“Getting back in the workforce is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while but not knowing how to go about it makes you feel a bit lost. Bamara have been so helpful with navigating all of that, and I can’t wait for what happens next.”