Email received from Lara | Australia
Dear teachers, students and families of Unity College
My name is Lara Levitan some of you may remember me as I attended Unity College about four years ago I graduated at the end of 2011. I loved attending school at Unity and Unity set me up for the years to come and they taught me that anything is possible if I set my dreams to it and do it to the best of my ability.
When I left Unity I went to study childcare at the Professional Child Care College in Melville which was at the time one of the biggest challenges I had ever faced. I worked very hard that year and achieved beyond my expectations. I just kept at it and did not give up. What to do after that I knew a whole lot about children but was not quite sure what the next step in life was going to be.
At around that time an amazing opportunity came around to go to Sydney Australia for the year to spend some time with my brother, his wife and two children and to experience a whole different way of life and to become completely independent.. I was obviously very nervous about this as the longest I had been away from my parents was three weeks and I had no idea how to do simple things like washing and changing my bed sheets. I really wanted the opportunity to go and learn about life and of course have year off to just have fun, Off I went to Sydney Australia for a year to grow up, become me and learn about real life. It was an amazing year where I grew up so much and learned so much about real life. I also learned very soon how to wash my clothes and change the bed sheets. In that year I also made lots of knew friends from all over the world and learned a lot about a lot of different countries and about being a grown up. It was an amazing experience that I will most definitely remember for ever.
As I love Australia so much I decided that I wanted to live in Australia. My parents were very happy for me to do that but what to do was a very big question mark and how to stay in Australia was a very big question mark as well, as Australia is not the most easy place to stay. The government is super strict here. Any way my mom suggested that I should study childcare in Australia. At first I was not so sure as I was not so confident in myself. I thought it would be super hard and I would never be able to do it but I really wanted to stay and I needed a new challenge in my life, so I decided to take the plunge and study in Australia. I knew it was going to be hard and I was going to come across lots of challenges but nobody got anywhere without challenges, a lot of hard work and determination. I thought and my parent thought if I did it to the best of my ability I would get through it and I would be proud of myself. So off I went back to Sydney Australia to achieve one of the biggest challenges of my life yet. It was beyond anything I had ever dreamed of and it was an amazing opportunity to have. I started off studying Certificate 3 in childcare services which was a 6 month course that would allow me to work in a child care centre in Australia. Those six months were the hardest life changing months of my life, It was harder than anything I had ever done and at times I really wanted to give up but a part of me was not giving up. I could do this and I will do this I said. After six months I finished my Certificate 3 and was planning to do my Diploma in Early Childhood Education but after those six months I was not so sure as it had been so hard. I came back to South Africa for my sister’s wedding and to see my family but I was still not sure if I wanted to go back and do my Diploma but because I had no other plan my parents put me on a plane back and said just do it to the best of your ability. Still quite unsure I got on the plane said goodbye to South Africa and was and still not sure when I would be back. I arrived back and there were quite a lot of challenges waiting for me here. I had not done as well as we had expected in my Certificate 3 but the college was prepared to give me a chance to make corrections and get my Certificate 3. I made my corrections and a few months later I got my Certificate 3. I was extremely proud of myself for not giving up and soldiering on.
The college were not sure if I should do the diploma as it is quite hard and there would be lots of paper work involved. It was all up to me to decide – come home or face one of the biggest challenges and achieve something beyond my wildest dreams. Well you can guess I was going to face it, take a deep breath and jump in and work the hard to the best of my ability. Everyone was behind me and I could feel the support but I knew I was the one who had to believe the most in myself and just work super hard. That was about a year ago and I now have six more months to go till I finish my diploma in Early Childhood Education. The first few months were hard and a bit rocky. I nearly did give up as I was beyond stressed and nervous, as well as other things were going on at home back in South Africa where I really just wanted to be there with my family. Then I thought it was a terrible idea and it was not worth it, I had this amazing opportunity that I had to fulfil for myself and my parents. The end of last year was hard but I learned if I took each day as it came and did not worry about the big picture I would get through it and I began to work harder than I had ever worked before.
I was extremely happy when summer break came up. I really deserved and needed a bit of time off. It was a great summer. I live in Bondi right by the beach and summer here is just beyond amazing; it was great. I then returned back to college to achieve a dream that was once beyond my dreams and it so turned out that I was doing really well as I was working very hard and I thought to myself I am so happy I did not give up. Study then became a part of my life. I love attending college and the confidence I have gained is amazing. I am extremely proud of myself and now cannot image life without college in it, which is a reality I will have to face very soon. Next year is not quit set in stone what I will do, but I am thinking of moving to another part of Australia and working in a childcare centre there, which will be amazing. I will be a bit sad to leave all my friends here in Sydney but I know I will make new ones and of course keep in touch with all my friends back here in Sydney. I am very excited to start working and to make my own money.
Life for me here, other than studying, is great. As I said, I live by the beach which is beautiful. I try to go to the beach as much as possible. I also go on adventures to the city quite often and most times get very lost but somehow I always find my way. I have made lots of great friends here and we do lots of fun exciting things here. Life never gets boring here in Sydney Australia. I have little job that I enjoy very much. I look after a little boy twice a week in the afternoon. We walk home and then we play. I also have a small babysitting business with regular families I babysit for at night, most of the time the children are asleep but I enjoy it and it’s a good way to earn money.
All of this would not be possible without the back bone of Unity. You set me up for life and you taught me to never give up and if I do it to the best of my ability that is good enough. I still think a lot about everyone at Unity as it had a very big impact on my life and without you I would not be where I am today. To all the children of Unity anything is possible. You just have to believe in yourself and don’t give up, and remember your dream is your dream and in your heart it’s the biggest dream and you should go beyond your boundaries to achieve it, to the best of your ability. Remember giving up should not be an option in life. You can do it! Just keep on dreaming it and work hard!!
I hope everyone at Unity is well. Congratulations on moving to the new school. You guys finely got there, how exciting. I most definitely plan to visit you the next time I am in South Africa which I am not sure when that will be but I will definitely come. I hope all you children are inspired by my story, anything is possible.