Viniththa Vasanthakumar (Vinnie) was the recipient of the 2018 Skillset Workforce Youth Connect award for her amazing achievements and determination to develop a career within the childcare industry. Vinnie has had an amazing journey and we can’t wait to see where she goes next!

Vinnie came to Australia with her father 7 years ago, at age 12, from Sri Lanka. As the rest of her family is back in Sri Lanka, Vinnie has had to rely on local community support.

Vinnie was introduced to Skillset Youth Connect by Bathurst High.  The school was concerned about her next steps now that she was transitioning from High school after completing her Higher School Certificate.

Youth Connect provided Vinnie with career planning advice and assistance to explore her post-school options.  Through this process, Vinnie identified her passion and goal was to work with children and she was assisted to enrol and commence in Certificate III in Children’s Services.  Skillset Youth Connect linked Vinnie with the Multicultural Service Officer to ensure she had specialist support and guidance through this process.

As Vinnie was living at Perthville, her next challenge was to get her motorbike license so that she could travel independently to TAFE and her work placements at a local childcare centre. Vinnie is now the proud owner of a scooter and one of her proudest moments has been conquering the dreaded roundabout on her way to TAFE.

Vinnie is now halfway through her Certificate III in Children’s Services and is a star student.  Her teacher has told Youth Connect she wishes all her students were like Vinnie.  “Vinnie is a very passionate student who always gives her best.  She is a keen participant in the classroom eager to give input in the discussion areas.  She is passionate in her study and has developed a great rapport in the classroom with fellow students and teachers.”

Vinnie has recently completed her first TAFE work placement at a local childcare centre.  The children loved Vinnie’s vibrant personality and enthusiasm and she enjoyed being with the children so much that she contacted the Child Care Centre after her placement to let them know she was available in the holidays and asked if she could volunteer her time.

Anyone who meets Vinnie falls in love with her zest for life and natural charisma. Skillset Youth Connect is proud to have worked alongside other community organisations and community members to assist Vinnie, who is always so grateful.

Vinnie has achieved so much this year which is a credit to her determination and beautiful attitude.  Youth Connect is very proud of Vinnie’s achievements and can’t wait to see where she goes next.

Congratulations Vinnie!