“THE STAR”, Tuesday, August 20, 2013 - PAGE 31
Young volunteers rewarded SOUTH Gippsland Specialist School is one of five schools in South Gippsland to share in more than $40,000 from the Victorian Government to plan and undertake volunteering projects. Welfare coordinator at the specialist school Michelle Ward said the Advance funding was wonderful. “It allows the school to spend money on equipment or travel, things we don’t allow for in our school budget for our Awards Victoria program,” she said. “Through this program, students complete the Compass Award which is for students 10 to 14 years old and a lot of our students go along to do the Bridge Award, which is for people with disabilities. “They can also complete the bronze silver or gold Duke of Edinburgh award.” There are a number of different components to these awards, including the citizenship aspect which
involves volunteering, the recreational sport component, a skill which can’t be a sport and the exploration or an adventurous journey aspect. “We have goals for the students who are completing the program and this funding allows them to accomplish those things,” Ms Ward said. “Some of our students volunteer with Meals on Wheels, Coal Creek or with Landcare planting trees. There is a range of things they can do to contribute to the community. “This year for their adventurous journey, a group of students went to Mount Baw Baw which for some was their first experience of snow.” Ms Ward said the school has been fortunate enough to receive funding each year it has applied. “We have a high level of participation from our most disabled students to our students doing VCAL and who will work and live independently,” she said. Deputy Premier and Gippsland South MLA Peter Ryan said the funding
helped students develop, plan and undertake volunteering projects. “Students involved in the Advance program are active volunteers and have
Planning P lanning the
made a significant contribution to their local community,” he said. “The support these students have provided to local community organisa-
tions through this program is invaluable and something they should be proud of. “I congratulate them and their schools on their involvement in this worth-
while program.” Schools in South Gippsland to receive Advance funding include South Gippsland Secondary College, South
Gippsland Specialist School, Mirboo North Secondary College, Korumburra Secondary College and Leongatha Secondary College.
Fun filled: South Gippsland Specialist School students from left, William Smith, Maddie Thompson, Matthew Sturk and Daniel Anderson are involved in the school’s awards program.
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