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NRL School to Work program offers support during trying time

Despite the suspension of the NRL season, the league's School to Work program is still striving to provide ongoing support and guidance for participants during an uncertain time.

Lyndall Down - Melbourne Storm's School to Work project officer - said the program was more vital than ever.

"I feel so incredibly fortunate to have the opportunity to continue the great work the program provides for our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in Melbourne," Down said.

"This is needed like no other time before. To have the opportunity to make a difference for our community in this way is incredibly important."

"Our program has always been extremely successful due to the relationships we develop with our students so they can achieve their dreams."

Lyndall Down School to Work Project Officer

"To be that additional support they can reach out to, knowing you are always there for them, is a position I don’t take for granted," she said.

"I feel extremely blessed that I can be that person for them."

Participant Ky-ya Nicholson Ward said the program is an ongoing support during her high school education.

"The school to work program has helped me so much throughout my years at Hallam Senior College," she said.

"At some stages, school was too much for me and I didn’t want to go anymore, but the School to Work program has kept me in the right mindset and given me many amazing opportunities.

"I was lucky enough to go to the NRL All Stars camp last year where I got to meet all of the players and be around some amazing people.

"Lyndall especially has opened pathways for other students and many of them now have great jobs because of that.

"The program makes me want to go to school & make the right decisions for me & my family. Without it I don’t think I’d be where I am today."

Ky-ya Nicholson Ward NRL School to Work participant

 Josh Addo-Carr sent a message of love and support to all students participating in the program, encouraging them to stay positive and offering some words and of reassurance.

"We will all get through this together," Addo-Carr said.

"Stay connected to the School to Work Program and hopefully we can all play some footy soon to entertain you and show you a bit of speed."

The NRL School to Work program is funded and supported by the Australian Government and uses the positive profile of rugby league to support and encourage Year 11 and 12 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students to complete their schooling and successfully transition into further education or employment.

If you would like to be a part of the program, or would like more information please contact Lyndall Down on 0459 874 170 or ldown@nrl.com.au