Hello, my name is Steven Corbin. I am 29 years old and I live in a little fishing village along the eastern shore called Coddles Harbour.
I am presently attending the ALP GAP Program that is offered by the Guysborough County Adult Learning Association in Guysborough, NS, working towards finding some meaning in my life.
Prior to being referred to this program and after leaving high school, I felt that my life had no meaning.
While going through school I was under a lot of stress and pressure especially from being bullied day in and day out. It was absolute hell, but I did manage to force myself to go through grade 12. However, I wasn't able to graduate because I was short on credits.
Over the past few years I have been employed at many different places but only for short terms anywhere from two days to two months. A few reasons for that was family illnesses, funding for transportation and training courses, and trying to squeeze every penny to get by from month to month.
My parents are seniors and they rely heavily on my brother and I to do things for them around the house and it makes me feel guilty to go out and try to find a job and make a living for myself. I always think of the worst case scenario in the sense that something might happen to them like falling down the stairs or a slip and fall. Then with every new job, there are new pressures and stresses added to the family illnesses and financial stresses and I find it hard to focus on the tasks at hand. I don't multitask very well because I do get mixed up a lot. So when I do start something I always try to finish it before moving on to something else.
Between each of the jobs I've had, when I wasn't working, I was always depressed and trying to think of what I did wrong or what I wasn't doing. Then I would feel that I was no good for anything and there was nothing to live for. But there was, it was just being able to find it.
Thanks to my employment councillor at Community Services who referred me to the ALP GAP Program, I have built a lot more self confidence and made 8 new friends to boot.
It was interesting to find out that I am reading at a level IV and, along with participating in the 10-week workshop on portfolio development, I learned a wide variety of skills, some of which I knew and a lot more that I had not known about until that time. I guess it was the list of skills that showed me what abilities I had. I thought to myself,
"Hey, I can do this", or
"I can do that", they were probably skills that I never knew of and they were stored away in the back of my mind. Going over the different skills brought them to light.
The ALP GAP Program facilitators are a great help to anyone who has trouble reading, writing and doing math. They will work with you individually for as long as you need them to. They will not force you to do something in a certain amount of time like they do in a high school setting. The ALP GAP Program has helped me find out what my strengths and weaknesses are throughout the many workshops offered along with the 20-week academic portion of the program.
After I complete the ALP GAP Program a few of my goals include writing the Nova Scotia GED test, improving my writing skills, working toward a full time job and increasing my self confidence so I won't be afraid to try new things.
Guysborough County Adult Learning in Guysborough County has no problems in helping anyone through their journey of learning. I am really glad they were there to help me out because I don't think I would have been able to do it without them. For that I am very grateful.