To celebrate National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day, we chatted toTeegan Toomath, one of the parents participating in Minderoo Foundation’s In-school Parent Employment Service.
This is a transcript of our interview with Teegan.
“My name is Teegan Toomath and I have four kids. I’m a single mum.
Being a mum is everything to me, because without my kids I really don’t know where I’d be right now. It changes your life, it turns everything around, the good and the bad. I think being a good role model for my kids would be number one, because they don’t really have anybody else besides me. Showing them right from wrong is top priority because monkey see, monkey do and majority of the time they learn when they’re little.
Well for today being National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day, celebrating kids and being a mum – I think it’s important that all cultures have their very own day so that they can learn other people’s cultures. There is also a lot of people and children out there that don’t know much about their own culture, so I think it’s really important that everybody gets to know a bit about each other’s culture. Especially my kids, interacting and knowing about their culture is one of the big things so then they can pass it down to their children and other children after that.
As a mum, I’m proud of my kids, for the individual little people they are today. They haven’t followed in my footsteps yet. I’ve gone along a bad path at some stage in my life but finally over the last two years it’s been going on the right track now.
My kids have come a long way since then, they’ve improved well in their school, they’ve got a lot of friends, their teachers and principals speak very highly of them, but each one of my kids I’m proud of them just because they’re themselves.
They don’t try and be somebody or something they’re not, they’ve got their own individual personality and that makes me proud because they are a special little person each on their own.”
Minderoo Foundation’s In-school Parent Employment Service (IPES) is funded by the Australian Government, Department of Social Services.
Peter specialises in policy and research and brings sophisticated analytical skills and experience across a range of policy areas to the Minderoo Foundation team. With a unique perspective from tertiary studies in philosophy and time as an Army Reserve Officer, Peter understands the importance of focusing on solutions and inspiring others to shape their own futures.