Local childcare worker Stella Hunter never believed in using her disabilities as an excuse for not achieving her goals but she never dreamt her passion would be rewarded in front of the entire State.
The 19-year-old was the recent recipient of a Traineeship Achiever Award in recognition of her work at Jalygurr-Guwan Aboriginal Children’s Services which she has done while completing a Certificate III in childcare.
The annual ceremony highlights the efforts of young people from around the State who have been in the care of the Department of Communities and are now continuing with further education or training courses.
Diagnosed with congenital spinal dystrophy and hydrocephalus at a young age, Miss Hunter was placed into care in 2008 in order to live in a stable home where her medical needs were looked after.
But this was never going to get in the way of Miss Hunter, who always knew working with kids was what she wanted to do.
“I always loved being with kids, helping them to learn and teaching them new things,” she said.
“Right now I work with babies and toddlers to primary-aged kids that are mainly indigenous and I like my job and the course I’m doing at TAFE and it is what I want to do for life.”
Miss Hunter was very excited when she found out she would be winning one of the big prizes.
“I felt good and proud about myself and I got to travel to Perth for it and I was the only Broome person there,” she said.
Miss Hunter was one of 46 who received awards on March 28 for their training, university studies or traineeships.
Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk congratulated the “inspirational commitment” of the winners.