From South Africa originally, Marvellous Sigudu came to Australia as a teenager in 2012. Four years later, he was completing year 12 at Hawker College and looking for something to do next. He didn’t have the money for either university or an accredited training course.
He thought the ideal direction for him would be a trade, “I just like hands work, working with my hands”. Plumbing appealed to him the most, and he wanted to go into a plumbing apprenticeship if he could, but even so he felt that any of the trades would be rewarding to go into. When he saw a SPARK flyer posted in his school, it seemed perfect; taking him in the direction he wanted without the training costs that had been in his way. So Marvellous became one of the participants in the West Belconnen Construction Program.
The program ran for ten weeks, which participants spent renovating the old Kippax Health Centre’s courtyard and building a community garden facility at Canberra City Care. Graduates received a Certificate II in Construction, a White Card, and an Asbestos Awareness Ticket. Marvellous was one of those graduates.
During the program Marvellous worked diligently, enjoying the opportunity to build something, and at the same time made many friends among the participants, who he still keeps in touch with for the most part. And, “I got experience with construction work sites, I experienced what construction is like.” Experience that he now often has to draw upon in his chosen field.
In May, only a few months after the end of the program, he accepted a carpentry apprenticeship with the Australian Training Company, and is being hosted by J. J. Interiors, an Australian trading company that does professional interior design construction. Marvellous has been doing cabinetry and joinery with them. He also continues to study his trade at CIT. He plans to become a fully licensed carpenter and then a builder, and would like to one day go back and learn plumbing.
The experience and skills he gained through SPARK training have set Marvellous on a path. So long as he keeps up his hard work, that path could lead to a lifelong career.