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AMEP Student turns AMEP Pathways Counsellor

8 October 2020

The following article is by Caleb Haunung, a former AMEP student and current AMEP Pathways Counsellor at Djerriwarrh Community & Education Services.

I came to Australia in the beginning of 2005 as a refugee. I attended the AMEP program when I first arrived in Australia. My first job in Australia was a Community Guide in 2005 where my role was to assist new arrivals from my country that were new refugees to Australia. I was responsible for local orientation including how to use public transport, opening a bank account, registration with Centrelink and Medicare, taking them to doctors and hospitals etc. In 2009, I worked as a Line 1 Pathways Advisor which was the trail of AMEP Pathways Counsellor at that time. From 2013 – 2017 I was employed as an AMEP Counsellor at AMES Australia before joining Djerriwarrh Community & Education Services in the same role.

I am still learning English while I am working because it isn’t an easy language for me. My current role is supporting AMEP students to be able to set either a short or long term goal for their settlement in Australia as their new home. Having a Pathways Counsellor position in AMEP program gives me the opportunity to provide extra support for students, which I didn’t have that when I did the program back in 2005. I would like to help them as much as I can and I’m motivated when students say “thank you very much for your help with everything”. In return, I am grateful to be able to contribute to my community. Coming from a similar background, every little thing I can do for our students while being able to give something back to the community motivates me every day and that’s why I came to Djerriwarrh to continue the AMEP Pathways Counsellor position a year and half ago.