IT goes without saying that your formative years during high school are a crucial time of your life, so gaining extra help throughout that period can be hugely beneficial.
Fortunately for members of Muswellbrook High School, that's exactly what they have had access to via the Polly Farmer Foundation's (PFF) through their Follow the Dream program.
Initiating in 2010, it provides after school tuition, individualised mentoring, well-being support and post-school career planning for aspirational Aboriginal students.
The aim of the program is for pupils to achieve academic outcomes that will lead to meaningful careers and enable them to connect to their cultural heritage.
They have recently secured fresh financial backing, with Bengalla Mining Company coming on board for a three-year sponsorship deal.
PFF CEO Cate Sims revealed what the extra funds can do for the program and its reach within the community.
"The partnership with Bengalla will deliver a number of direct and in-direct benefits," she said.
"Among other things, we can now commit to annual career excursions which are vitally important for students to make informed decisions about their post school pathways."
Supporting more than 30 students per year since its inception, Bengalla community relations specialist Fiona Hartin said the company was ecstatic to be part of the movement.
One pupil who is well-acquainted with Follow the Dream is Nikita O'Hara, who has been involved with it since she was in Year seven.
"It's been really good, it's offered me a place where I can come and I know I'm going to get my assessments done and I'm going to have help to do that," the 17-year-old said.
Currently undertaking Year 11, she is intending on joining the army or attending university and believes the program has had a significant impact on her planning for the future, which truly displays the initiative's worth.
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