Fasheena Young
Wonnarua People (Hunter Valley, NSW) and Papua New Guinea
Human Resources Administrator
Australian Army

Australian Operational Service Medal – Greater Middle East
Australian Defence Medal


This powerful message encapsulates the principles I strive to embody in every aspect of my life. It serves as a reminder to remain resilient and confident, no matter the challenges I face. By standing tall, I commit to upholding my integrity and being a leader, maintaining my self-respect, and projecting confidence. By standing strong, I pledge to persevere through adversity, drawing on my inner strength and determination and carrying my culture forward. This mantra guides my actions and decisions, influencing how I approach situations. It inspires me to take bold steps towards my goals, advocate for myself and others, and remain steadfast in my values and continue my culture. Embracing this message, I aim to inspire those around me to also stand tall and strong, fostering a culture of resilience and empowerment.

I grew up in a small country town in south west Queensland, where farming life shaped my early years. Our family of five included my oldest brother, who joined us through kinship. Our modest lifestyle taught me resilience and the value of hard work. From a young age, I was aware of my Papua New Guinean and Indigenous heritage, which left me with a feeling of wanting more and a sense of being lost and not belonging. However, this sense of displacement was alleviated through my experiences in the Army, where I felt more accepted and was able to meet other Mob which allowed me to find a sense of belonging assisting in my cultural journey. One experience that stands out vividly in my memory is the time I met my good friend’s family and travelled out to her Country, where I was warmly welcomed and made to feel at home. In the military, it is often the case that we are posted far from our own families, leading to a sense of isolation and longing for the comfort of home. However, during visits, the genuine hospitality and kindness of my friend’s family filled that void.

After completing 15 years in the Army, I decided to leave the military and after completing my studies, I worked within industry working for an Indigenous and Veteran owned company, JY Australia from there joined the public sector.