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Chances to explore music in school shaped Felicity’s career

When Felicity was 12 years old, her dad was made redundant from his job. It caused a huge financial strain on the family both emotionally and financially. But Smith Family sponsors were there for Felicity and her brother. Throughout her education, Felicity was able to take part in our learning programs. Now she is pursuing her dream. And she says the long-term support has been key to showing her what she could achieve.

“Sponsorship helped financially with the cost of books and uniforms, but it also made me feel valued - there was a lovely person out there who didn’t know me but still wanted to help me” said Felicity.


“My confidence improved. Having a sponsor made me want to do well in school, so I could show them how great I was becoming.”

Felicity had always been passionate about music. Yet due to her family’s circumstances, she couldn’t explore it. Once she started receiving sponsorship, Felicity was able to hire a flute. When she was in Year 9, she took part in our SmArts program which encourages students’ creativity. It included a tour of Melbourne University and a performance at their Melba Hall.

“It really opened my eyes to what I could do after school,” said Felicity.

Yet when she was in Year 10, Felicity felt overwhelmed by the life-changing decisions ahead of her. So we connected her online to an older professional who mentors through our iTrack program.

“I was attracted to the idea of having someone help me find the best post-school pathway,” said Felicity.

“The most beneficial help I received from my iTrack mentor was advice on time management and preparing for exams. There was no point talking about all these wonderful pathways if I wasn’t feeling happy with my management skills. I asked for help and found that my stress levels settled and my grades remained more consistent.”

Now Felicity is in university and as a part-time job, she teaches flute at her old school. It’s how the learning opportunities sponsorship provided years ago have now shaped her career.

“The sponsorship helps me purchase my uni textbooks and afford travel costs. First, I completed a Certificate 4 in Music Industry. Now I am in my second year of a Bachelor of Psychological Science. Ideally I want to marry music and psychology,” said Felicity.

“I’d like to go into music therapy – where I can work with people with an intellectual disability or other issues and use music as a vehicle to engage with them and make a difference to their lives.

"The people I met through these [Smith Family] programs really helped me to develop personally. The potential is unlimited. If students get the resources and support, they can just go for it!"

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