Young musician on path to become community leader

Future leader: Josh Moorhouse is developing his focus on the community.

Future leader: Josh Moorhouse is developing his focus on the community.

From battling personal health issues and spending time in hospital, 24-year-old Josh Moorhouse has now become an integral part of the Onkaparinga Youth Enterprise Hub, helping him to find his confidence and place in the community, while inspiring other young people to do the same.

Josh discovered the Onkaparinga Youth Enterprise Hub (OYEH) simply by chance around a year ago, not long after making the decision to move back home.

Prior to this Josh said he had been living closer to the city playing and teaching music for a living, it wasn’t until his personal health issues landed him in the hospital and forced him to re-think his life.

Discovering OYEH for Josh happened as a complete coincidence. 

“I was walking past OYEH, saw Wilson Ndung'u (Community Development Officer) and all these young people playing table tennis and it looked awesome so I signed up to be a volunteer that day,” Josh said.

At this point Josh has largely given up on his passion for music but after a piano was donated to OYEH he was quickly back to doing what he loved, something which Wilson said he has an incredible talent for. 

Upon getting involved with OYEH Josh was quick to start helping out anywhere he could and quickly became part of the leadership group; meeting once a month to talk about OYEH’s vision, the programs they wanted to be run, what sort of space they wanted it to be and what they would provide to the community.

Following on from his involvement with OYEH, Josh decided to apply for the 2018 Bendigo Bank’s Fleurieu Future Leaders Program and was lucky enough to receive a scholarship which the City of Onkaparinga contributed a $800 sponsorship to through their youth program.

Josh said he is interested in social development and from his own experiences is now driven and inspired to support his community in similar ways that it has supported him.

“I really believe in the value of taking responsibility for your own life, with respect to the importance of finding an environment which enables you to do that.”

The Onkaparinga Youth Enterprise Hub came into existence as a result of research which identified gaps in the community.

Wilson Ndung’u said that with youth unemployment so high in the southern suburbs of Adelaide, it was important to develop a place which young people could come and create and showcase their work, develop connections and just hang out.

While OYEH is currently shutdown as it is in the process of finding a new location to be run from, it also gave young people the chance to learn about social media, marketing, branding and networking.

“OYEH is a place where people feel safe, valued and were able to create opportunities for themselves,” Wilson said.

Alongside Josh a number of other young people have also found their own success with OYEH.

Over the time OYEH was open for its first run they had 2,300 attendances, 850 hours invested by volunteers, 27 young people complete barista courses, 13 young people run their own businesses from OYEH, 15 partnerships with local businesses and community organisations and 3 new start-ups launched.