When we first met him, Toafa had been housed in temporary accommodation through a youth homelessness service for around 8 months. He found it hard to be motivated, confident or communicate well. He wanted a change for himself, but admitted he was easily influenced by those around him.

Toafa comes from a large Samoan family, and those community connections are really important to him. Unfortunately, a serious breakdown had occurred and he had not had contact with his family for quite some time.

Toafa’s coach spent time building rapport with him, and his communication and attendance began to improve with each week. He intimated a dream to explore a career in hairdressing but was hesitant because his family and some peers didn’t feel that was an appropriate job for a man.

Toafa’s coach supported him to make contact with a well-known Sydney hairdresser, who then invited him to a three-day training program. At the end of the training, he had become a qualified Salon Assistant and was more confident in his career direction. His coach helped him create an ABN and a PayPal account to be able to pick up some gig work through online platform Piloroo.

Toafa at salon with two other people

After 3 weeks Toafa was picked up by a renowned Salon and is now employed on a fulltime basis as an Apprentice Hairdresser – he could not be happier. He has managed to secure Transitional Housing and is living in a studio apartment 300m from the beach and is loving his new lifestyle. Toafa has said to his coach numerous times that he has now found his purpose in life and wishes to continue grow and evolve.