In the last eight years, Sam went from battling a major drug addiction to winning Apprentice of the Year at the 2019 North Coast regional final of the Queensland Training Awards.

During this time, he also got married and is now raising two children.

“I have always been confident in my skills as a carpenter but completing the trade contractors’ course really helped my understanding of what is required to run a successful business,” Sam says.

With the support of Construction Skills Queensland (CSQ) and Blue Dog Training he was able to complete his Establish Legal and Risk Management Requirements of Small Business course to obtain his trade contractor’s licence.

Sam became a part of Teen Challenge Queensland, a faith-based, not-for-profit organisation which provides support for young people and adults to overcome drug, alcohol and other life-controlling issues.

Sam was able to overcome his drug addiction and is now looking to the future and how he can really give back.

Having obtained his trade contractor’s licence, Sam is now looking to put an idea years in the making into action to help others in need.

“My plan is to move to Papa New Guinea full-time. My wife and I have a vision of starting an orphanage and drug rehab centre – to take guys out of the drug scene and teach them the trade and give them an opportunity make a living.”

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 outbreak Sam has had to temporarily put his plans on hold, but he is not letting the time go to waste.
Sam is using the time to build his family a home in Australia to set them up financially and make the move to Papa New Guinea easier when the time comes.

Sam and his family will first visit a local couple in the Jiwaka Providence who have opened their home to drug addicts, widows and orphans.

“They have 60 people come to their house everyday seeking help though they do not have the facilities to accommodate them all. They are helping as many people as they can, teaching them how to grow and sell food instead of turning to drugs,” Sam says.

“I visited them in 2017, they have been going for five years, and no one had visited or helped them in all that time. I helped them get in contact with Teen Challenge who then supported them by buying a portable mill.

“They do not have building and construction skills, so this is where I was going to come in and help.

“I plan to help build a dormitory for them so they can provide accommodation for the people to come to them.”

Using this as a starting point, Sam envisions building his family a home on land they have been offered. Sam’s plans include eventually starting his own company and building more facilities to support those who need a helping hand.

“Coming out of where I was as a drug addict, I sorted myself out and got a second opportunity or chance at life and so I just really want to do that for other people – give them another chance and journey with those guys who are struggling with drugs and alcohol.”

Sam’s dreams are unlike any we’ve heard before and CSQ is extremely proud to have played a role in his journey to success.

“CSQ’s funding allowed me to really go for it, if I didn’t have the funding available to me, I wouldn’t have been able to complete the course and go out on my own and work towards my goals.”

Sam, you truly are an inspiration, thank you for sharing your amazing story.

To find out more about CSQ’s funded courses, click here.