ENGAGING SCHOOLS

We are all storytellers. We all live in a network of stories. There isn’t a stronger connection between people than storytelling.
— Jimmy Neil Smith, Director of the International Storytelling Centre

Keynote speaker

Tony’s Cabramatta Story is centred on choices and consequences and bring to light the dark reality of drug abuse and the effects it has on family, education and community. Tony’s transformation from a life filled with tragedy and despair to hope and achievement is one to inspire every audience. 
Duration: 50mins Cost: Please enquire below. 

Seminar Objectives 

  • Inspire and motivate students to achieve goals, dreams and aspirations.
  • Engage at risk students to rethink their path of destruction.
  • Challenge destructive mindsets and cultural perceptions of this generation.
  • Equip with strategies for healthy and positive relationships.

Biography 

Tony is the son of Vietnamese refugees; growing up in poverty in the 1990s in what was the drug capital of Australia, Cabramatta. Like many refugees from the Vietnam War, Tony’s parent’s hope of a safe new home for their family was crushed by the 1990s heroin culture that overtook the lives of their children.

At 13, Tony escaped the loneliness and domestic violence of his home life and joined one of the most notorious crime gangs in Cabramatta, finding himself jailed a year later. 

Tony continued to deal drugs when he was released. It seemed at the time that the gang gave him a sense of belonging and self-importance. At the age of 16, he faced the harsh reality of this lifestyle by losing a close friend to a drug overdose, and almost gunned down at 19 years old.

In 2004, Tony made some powerful positive choices that changed his life forever. With 14 friends and family who died as a result of that destructive life style, Tony shares his heart-wrenching story of redemption to schools, councils and organisations all over the country and abroad. 

Tony has over 10 years experience working with disengaged youths and has devoted his life to helping people break free from the same destructive cycle he was once trapped in. Now a husband and a father to 6 beautiful children, 2 in which are adopted, Tony’s serves as a pastor, a school chaplain and a community leader within Liverpool Sydney, Australia.

Tony's Past engagements

  • Scots College - Yr 9 Long Journey Home, NSW
  • Fairvale HS - Crossroads Camp, NSW
  • Cabramatta HS - Yr 9 Finding my place Program NSW
  • Ashcroft HS - Yr 11 Crossroads NSW
  • Bossely Park HS- Yr 11 Crossroads NSW
  • Fairfield HS- Yr 11 Crossroads NSW
  • Ingelburn HS NSW
  • Kawerau Intermediate School, NZ
  • Melville HS, WA
  • Narang HS, QLD 
  • Pacific Pines State HS, QLD
  • St Agnes Catholic HS, NSW
  • South Strathfield Boys, NSW
  • Bonnyrigg HS - Project 10 NSW
  • Springwood HS - Crossroads NSW
  • Westfields Sports HS - Crossroads NSW
  • Illawarra HS - Welfare 
  • Picton HS - Welfare
  • Leumeah HS - Boys Talk
 

What are people staying? 

The boys were completely absorbed by Tony’s story.
— Glengarry Scots College
I can hear a pin drop (900+Students)
— Principal Narang High School, QLD
It was very powerful and informative.
— Senior Policy Advisor - Fairfield Council
 
 

Partnerships

Have Tony speak at your next event. 

 
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Inspire 180 Project 

The capacity to learn is a gift, the ability to learn is a skill; the willingness to learn is a choice.
— Brian Herbert

Rational 

Inspire 180 project is a young males program which aims to enhance their social, educational and leadership potential. The 180 project is pilot program is designed for, but not limited to young men who are at risk of drug experimentation, criminal behaviour and gang affiliation.

We seek to successfully engage male students in meaningful ways to ensure we build responsible, resilient and successful community contributors and future leaders. In addition to our core mentoring services, Inspire180 works in partnership with government agencies and support partners to provide a range of initiatives to engage and improve the lives of young men through storytelling, mentoring, education and community engagement opportunities.

Throughout the 9 week structured program spanning over a school term, incorporates workshops, activities, leadership and community projects, students will embark on a journey that will inspire and transform their worldview and perspectives on their ability to reach their personal goals, pursue their dreams and realise their full potential.

Building resilience though a holistic approach, strengthening their values and worldview. Nurture and empower young men to build communication, teamwork and leadership skills. Identify and develop self-awareness and strategies to manage life challenges and well-being. Shifting destructive mindsets around substance abuse or experimentation, criminal behaviour and gang association.

Outcomes: 

  • Building healthy, positive relationships and positive risk-taking.
  • Identify future goals and pathways towards future employment and personal development.
  • Nurture and empower young men to build communication, teamwork and leadership skills. Identify and develop self-awareness and strategies to manage life challenges and well-being.
  • Shifting destructive mindsets around substance abuse or experimentation, criminal behaviour and gang association.
  • Building healthy, positive relationships and positive risk-taking.

  • Identify future goals and pathways towards future employment and personal development.

Targeted student groups;

Students in Year 9 to 11 who have been identified by the Learning and Support Team or Welfare Team as being at risk of disengaging from their learning and/or at risk of substance abuse, criminal behaviour and gang association.

School Overview:

  1. ELECT– participating schools to identify students at risk, but not limited to substance abuse, criminal behaviour and gang association.
     
  2. ENGAGE – students are actively engaged in meaningful activities and interactive guest speakers and mentors delivered by Inspire180 and support partners.
     
  3. EDUCATE – students are provided with learning opportunities aimed at improving their education, future employment and life skills. Instilling values towards a positive worldview.
     
  4. ENCOURAGE – Through mentoring process individualised plans are developed collaboratively with students to identify strategies to encourage the students to take ownership and responsibility.
     
  5. EMPOWER – students are given special opportunities to interact with community leaders, successful business people and attend leadership events across Sydney that will inspire hope and future possibilities.

All participants will celebrate their achievements in their final session and invited to attend a graduation celebration with an invitation extended to all participants parents, teachers, mentors and facilitators; connecting the schools community while reflecting the positive impact the program has had on the participants life.

Contact us for a information pack. 

 

Partnerships

DRug education  

Minimising harm by maximising prevention.
— Our mission

We are first and foremost – ‘Fence Builders’ not ‘Ambulance Drivers’
We seek to deliver intervention and preventative processes based on well thought through prescriptions. Good and workable prescriptions matter, giving students not only direction and clarity, but also sound foundational life motivators such as hope and meaning, are also key in allowing the Affective Domain education to ‘stick’.

Overview 

We seek to engage, educate and recalibrate cultural perceptions and values through ‘fence building’ resiliency developing processes. In order to shift the community perception, particular adolescent attitudes around criminal gangs, alcohol and drugs, away from cultural expectation of participation, towards the proactive and protection option of ‘not having to’ approach. 

Book us for your next AOD education

 

Partnerships 

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