Heywire winner Jacob Yunupingu, from Yirrkala, Northern Territory, shares his story.

Listen to an audio recording of this story at Heywrire.

Sometimes, it takes some failures at life before you can see that you are heading in the wrong direction.

Yirrkala in East Arnhem is a beautiful part of the world, with its shining white beaches, yellow-white sand and awesome sunsets.

I have a big family, but my brothers put me on the wrong track when I was growing up.

I guess they didn’t know any better, because they also did a lot of things when they were my age, that they now regret.

They taught me how to break into houses and steal.

I learnt how to fight and how to lie.

Things got so bad that I was sent to a detention centre.

The thing about this detention centre is that it taught me to change my choices in life and get back on the right track … instead of staying on the wrong track.

This Detention Centre was called ‘Bush Mob’.

It housed a lot of young fellas who were starting their lives in crime, just like me.

The people who ran the centre took us camping and fishing.

We used to sit around a warm, bright fire at night telling stories about our past and dreams for the future.

Now, I’m a student at Yirara College in Alice Springs.

I am determined to learn as much as I can so that I can graduate and go out there into the world and make my mark.

This is what my grandfather used to say to me when I was little … “Go out there Jacob, learn, be proud and teach others your knowledge.”

I guess I didn’t really pay much attention when I was little, but I am going to listen to him now.

I think I’d like to become a ranger or a health worker maybe, so that I can help my family, my community, my relatives and friends make better choices for themselves too — just like I did.

I’m so glad that I was given the chance to see; that I didn’t wait until it was too late to change my choices.