Aspiring embalmer, community leader takes part in YMCA youth leadership program

ISABELLE Haywood doesn’t want to keep two of her life goals on ice for very long.

Young leader: Ballarat Secondary College year 10 student Issabelle Haywood is taking part in the YMCA’s Y-Voice leadership program. PICTURE: JEREMY BANNISTER

Young leader: Ballarat Secondary College year 10 student Issabelle Haywood is taking part in the YMCA’s Y-Voice leadership program. PICTURE: JEREMY BANNISTER

The bubbly Ballarat Secondary College Wendouree campus year 10 student wants to be both an embalmer and a community leader.

And she is well on her way to both goals, having done work experience at a Ballarat funeral parlour as a precursor to a Melbourne University course and taking part in the YMCA’s Y-Voice, a leadership development program for Wendouree youth.

“I heard about it (Y-Voice) through school. There were posters up and I said ‘I want to do that’,” Isabelle said.

The program involves 10 students from both Ballarat Secondary College and Yuille Park P-8 Community College doing a session every Thursday between 2 and 3pm, alternating between the two campuses.

The first lesson was a full-day program with guest speakers from Headspace and Leadership Ballarat.

Throughout the day, the students looked at team building, leadership skills and leadership development.

Isabelle said another session looked at ways of keeping Wendouree youth connected.

“We thought about running movie nights and finding a centre to do activities and play games.”

Isabelle said the main personal program benefit was improving her confidence.

“It’s all about team building skills and co-operating well with others with different personality traits.

“Some of us can butt heads but it’s about dealing with it responsibly.

“They told us good leaders have to have a good mindset, good mental health and confidence.”

fiona.henderson@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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