Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME)
Do you want to change a life forever by giving 20 hours of your time across a year? AIME’s vision is to end inequality through education.
Join the AIME team to be a mentor for 800+ Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander kids across the Southern Cross University regions (Gold Coast, Lismore and Coffs Harbour).
We believe everyone has a story, and everyone can contribute to the narrative of this country in a positive way. AIME builds bridges between university and those students who might be left behind.
With the AIME Program walking alongside them, Year 12 attainment for local Indigenous students was 96% in 2017, higher than the non-Indigenous average that year which was 86%.
What we do is simple, but it works.
Or get in contact with our local staff:
Mentee to Mentor: Kaleesha’s story
I remember sitting at the back of all my classes because I was too "shame". Shame because when I looked around the class, there was a minority of Aboriginal kids; I was shame because my culture was a minority, I was shame because of the fact I didn't want to put my hand up and ask a question incase it was "wrong" or "silly".
My AIME journey started in year 9. As I walked into the first AIME session at SCU Lismore, my eyes lit up because there was something about this experience that was going to change me. I didn't feel shame, I felt proud. Proud because when I looked around, my culture was everywhere. By the end of my first AIME session, I left the campus with a completely different mindset. I gained a sense of confidence, pride within myself and my culture.
From this one mentoring session, I went back to school and started speaking up for the other Aboriginal kids in the school.
From year 10-12 I was the Indigenous Representative for the SRC. This honour meant that my fellow Aboriginal peers could come to me with issues and opinions they wanted me to voice within other student leaders.
I completed year 12 in 2014. I wanted to be a teacher but first I wanted to have hands on experience and see if I liked it. I walked into a primary school in Lismore with my Resume and asked to see the principal. She wasn't available so I left a copy of my resume. A few weeks later, I had a call. I had an interview to be a Norta Norta tutor at the school for the Indigenous kids. I truly believe AIME gave me the confidence to walk into a school and ask to see the Principal. It sounds like a daunting thing to do, however the outcome was rewarding!
I spent the last 3 years working as an Aboriginal Community Support Officer and a Bundjalung Language Tutor.
More recently, I joined the AIME Program Team for Southern Cross University. I want to give back to my community however I can. I know what these kids are going through and when you've been through it yourself, it gives you power to push and want to help make a difference.
The AIME program has helped me overcome many adversities in High School. Every Indigenous kid has a voice waiting to be heard. I believe AIME is the platform for their voices to be heard. I will continue to mentor Indigenous kids, I will continue to listen to them. I will continue to be a Proud Bundjalung women and tell the kids of the AIME program, they can be proud too.