GLADESVILLE student Joel Smith has earned an $8,000 award from charity BBM Youth Support to travel and develop his horticultural knowledge overseas.

The award will allow him to work, study and grow his confidence through international work experience.

He plans on travelling next March and will receive his award at an exclusive ceremony on November 6 at Sydney”s Parliament House.

“This award gives me opportunities I never would have otherwise experienced, and I can”t wait to learn about different methods of horticulture,” Joel said.

“It really is a once in a lifetime opportunity for me, and over the next few months I will be planning and preparing myself for my trip abroad.”

The Award is designed to be a self-directed learning experience to give young people a chance to not only improve their professional development, but to grow in confidence and build their own aspiration for the future.

Awardees bring this knowledge back to inspire others in their community to build a better future for Australia.

BBM Youth Support CEO Melanie Stray feels that these kind of development opportunities are all too rare for the young people of Australia.

“We believe that successful young people create more opportunities for themselves and others, and we know that these award experiences help young people grow both personally and professionally,” she said.

“These awards have been running since 1983, and many of our alumni have brought back skills and new perspectives to Australia, inspiring other young people to go out there and fulfil their potential. This ripple effect will help Australia have a better future, and I”m proud to be a part of this.”

BBM Youth Support offers awards in the performing arts, agriculture, horticulture and trades. To learn more visit bbm.asn.au.