Part 3: Eight survival tips for when life is full of drama

There are 15 students at our small community school in Adelaide. Many of us have attended quite a few other schools before coming here. Some of us have moved homes a lot which means we change schools too, but most of us were kicked out of our former schools.

Sometimes it’s hard to see the point in anything when things at home are full of dramas. There is always so much going on. There may be drugs, violence, living apart from parents … all this stuff affects us in different ways. 

We know other kids, other families, are going through this shit too.


So here are our 8 survival tips … we hope they might be helpful to you


1.  Sleeping at school

We have teachers who let us sleep if we come to school too tired. I stayed up until 3:30 one night so the teacher let me sleep. That was good.


2.  Wearing clothes that help you become invisible.

Hoodies and head down on the desk. You can look cool even if you’re not feeling it. 


3.  My nan

My nan lets me go to the city or the beach.  Like at the weekend, I saw all my best friends for years and we went to the mall and the skate park in the city.  There is a temporary skate park there now but we still go there. Nan trusts me and knows I won’t do anything bad.


4.  Having a life plan

At 14 I am going to get a job at McDonalds and get my life together. I want to be wealthy.  I will help kids with cancer as I would not want to be like that.  I want to own a business and sell skateboards and stuff.

I might go to the High School nearby to see my old friends.  But I need to get good grades first.


5. Remembering our school is better than the last one.

Kids here are nicer than at my old school. I am not threatened every day like there. It’s not too bad here actually.


6. Making up to the teacher if we upset them

I gave the teacher flowers yesterday.  We had a bad day the day before. She has been my teacher for one year and three months.


7. Remembering I am good at something

I am good at numeracy.


8. Doing things that help us forget the dramas

I have a PS4 and I am good at it.  At home I have a GT05 which I love.

I am going to the Ramp Fest in Melbourne. (Skateboarding)

I love shopping.  We live near Aldi’s.  You can get cheap food there.  Like a Party Tub only costs $5.  I get a rush of happiness in me when I’m shopping.  I shop online or in shops.  I buy food and toys.  I am self-taught.  The trigger started two years ago.  I got $180 worth of food for $50.  Now I pay correct money for what I want.


So those are our 8 tips:

1. Sleeping at school

2. Wearing clothes that help you become invisible

3. My nan

4. Having a life plan

5. Remembering our school is better than the last one

6. Making up to the teacher if we upset them

7. Remembering I am good at something

8. Doing things that help us forget the dramas


What are your tips?

A note on the artwork:

Refugees. A refugee is a person who has fled his or her own country, cannot return due to fear of persecution, and has been given refugee status. These paintings show how refugees face hardship to reach safety and to find peace and happiness in a new country.




Ezatullah Gulistani is a 22 year old male was born in 1994 in Afghanistan. Ezatullah grew up and completed his year 12 in Pakistan. He has been painting for five years. Ezatullah has arrived in Australia about 10 months ago.




Part 4: We try not to take people’s hate into our hearts


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments