Shane* had to grow up quickly.

He was the son of two alcoholic parents. Early on, he had to shoulder responsibilities beyond his years.

Shane lived in fear of his father’s rages. At 14, it became too much. He left home and started living on the streets.

To escape the pain of being homeless, Shane started using drugs and alcohol. After six months living rough, he was an addict.

When Shane came to Youth Off The Streets, he needed help.

Our first priority when young people in crisis come to Youth Off The Streets is to find them a safe place to sleep. Shane moved into temporary accommodation in Don Bosco Home in Marrickville, part of the Inner West Youth Homeless Services.

We assigned him a caseworker and he made the commitment to attend Key College, our accredited high school for homeless youth.

With the support of the Youth Off The Streets team, Shane began to turn his life around.

Without parents who were positive role models, Shane missed many of life’s important lessons. The Youth Off The Streets team set about helping Shane with the life skills every young person needs to live an independent life: healthy nutrition, personal hygiene, dental health, personal finance and household responsibility.

Shane achieved his HSC at Key College and went on to study aged care nursing at TAFE. He is now working in the field and – with the help of a Youth Off The Streets scholarship – he is completing a university degree in nursing.

Shane’s now passing on some of the lessons he’s learned to the next generation. He is a supportive partner and loving father of two beautiful young children.

*Name changed for privacy reasons

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