‘Never give up on your dreams,’ says JD (Justin Doust), a previous CJ student who is now a volunteer on campus.
JD always wanted to work in hospitality and now he does! He has worked in a number of cafes, volunteers to teach CJ hospitality students barista skills every Tuesday at Jackson’s Training Café and makes coffee at CJ events. Recently he made coffee for CJ at the Bassendean Business Festival, located at the Bassendean Town Centre.
JD began his CJ experience in 2008 when he joined the ACCESS program, which has now developed into the 11 P.L.U.S and Transitions programs. JD says, ‘I had a negative experience at a previous high school where I was bullied and lost confidence. Coming to CJ, a warm and friendly environment, made me feel safe. This helped me find out who I am and helped me feel comfortable in my own skin.’
After one year in ACCESS, JD studied Certificate II Kitchen Operations, Certificate I Information Technology, Photography and English. JD says, ‘I was treated like an adult and got on with the teachers.’
JD made close friends at CJ and even helped a friend set-up his own coffee shop in Queensland by teaching him how to make expresso coffee.
JD’s Hospitality teacher, Cath McDougal says, ‘ The nurturing, caring and flexible environment of CJ helped JD gain skills and confidence. He has become an ambassador for CJ. He’s willing to give up his free time to help students. He has become part of the CJ fabric. He’s awesome!’
JD says, ‘I hope my story inspires people who have been bullied.’