Yalari News - June 2020

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Educating Indigenous Children


Dreaming, believing inspiring and achieving



ISSUE NO. 46 | June 2020



Founding Director | Waverley Stanley AM This is one of my favourite times of the year as I get to spend time travelling through our country meeting the children who have applied for 2021 scholarships and their families in their home towns and communities. I am currently writing this from our first trip along the Queensland southern border out to Quilpie and back. I am proud of the way our Yalari team has been flexible, supportive, innovative and dedicated over these last few months. Whether they have worked from home, worked in the office, or our Student Support Officer’s out in the field, thank you for your continued commitment to Yalari. We appreciate the support of the students

and their families, transparency with donors and sponsors, flexibility with schools, kindness to one another and, as I like to say, your ‘stickability’. Children are resilient and vulnerable at the same time. On the whole, they have adapted brilliantly to the online world of study and communications while benefitting from being at home with their families and learning outside the four walls of a classroom. However, their vulnerabilities are some of the very reasons they are on a Yalari scholarship. While the students are at home in their communities doing their online learning, we continue to support them by ‘keeping the calm’ while holding their hands remotely.


Over half of our students will have been at home for four months by the time Term 3 begins. The struggle to settle into school life again could be enormous for some, particularly the new Year 7s. The student support team will continue to remain engaged and support every student this term in readiness for ‘return to school’, whenever that may be. We hope to have our dinners towards the end of the year to celebrate with our children, schools and sponsors, although it may look and feel very different. Either way, we will recognise our collective work ethic, significant growth and unwavering support of so many ... the Yalari Way.

Educating Indigenous Children

Yalari acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first inhabitants of this land. We recognise the culture, history, diversity and deep connection to land, waters and territorial seas of Australia.

Yalari is a not-for-profit organisation that offers quality, secondary education scholarships at leading Australian boarding schools for Indigenous children from regional, rural and remote communities.

We pay our respects to the Elders, past and present and acknowledge the Yalari office is on Kombumerri country within the lands of the Yugambeh language group of the wider area. We also acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which we work Australia-wide, and recognise their culture, heritage and beliefs.

Our mission is to educate and empower Indigenous children from regional, rural and remote communities to bring about generational change.

Yalari Limited | PO BOX 1355, Oxenford QLD 4210 | Ph: 07 5665 8688 | F: 07 5665 8611 | E: info@yalari.org ABN: 66 113 794 148 ACN: 113 794 148 | Yalari is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. Copyright © 2020 Yalari Limited. All rights reserved. The information contained in this newsletter is for general information purposes only. The opinions and interpretations expressed within are those of the author only and may not reflect those of other identified parties. Every effort is made to ensure that information is accurate at time of printing.


Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years

Cover Image: Scotch College, Adelaide students

Yalari Newsroom

This year’s National Reconciliation Week took place from 22 May to 3 June and gave our Yalari mob the opportunity to reflect on the theme for 2020 – In this together. This is now resonating in ways we could not have foreseen when Reconciliation Australia announced it last year, but it reminds us whether in a crisis or in reconciliation we are all #InThisTogether. Across the Yalari community we celebrated the week in different ways; from a Reconciliation Week lunch in the Yalari office, to the many and varied activities undertaken by our partner schools, we all had the chance to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture. Everyone has a role to play when it comes to reconciliation, and in playing our part we collectively build relationships and communities that value Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, histories, cultures, and futures.

Welcome to the team, Cam! Cameron Prout We are delighted to welcome Cameron Prout into a new role with the Yalari team, leading the development and implementation of Yalari’s long term philanthropy strategy. Cam has many years’ experience in philanthropy and leadership, notably as CEO of both the Heart Foundation and the Children’s Hospital Foundation in Queensland over 18 years and recently as General Manager of Fundraising and Philanthropy at UnitingCare. “The foundation for equality and generational change for Indigenous children is access to a quality education. So many wonderful supporters have made an incredible difference to the lives of hundreds of children in the last 15 years. Their legacy will be a growing alumni that will have an ever-increasing impact on generational change and reconciliation for all Australians,” Cam said. Cam has been on the Yalari Board since 2018 and stepped down recently to work closely with the Board, Regional Councils and staff to bring more supporters into the Yalari family and build a large endowment so Yalari can provide educational opportunities for future generations of children in perpetuity.

“At Abbotsleigh, we’re woven together in this moment of time, and I know we are strong enough to share all of our stories, no matter how hard they are sometimes. It doesn’t matter if it’s online, at school or in your community, now is your time to open up, share and learn about culture, language and the truth. It is when and how we reflect on who we are and who we want to be that we define who we are as a community and from this we shape our actions, which define who we are as a nation.” - Sophie Oakeshott, Year 10

Students from Scots PGC Warwick are happy to be back!

Student Stats The returning MLC Perth girls are good at practicing their social distancing!


The Glennie girls were glad to catch up with each other after so long!

UPDATE... Yalari students who have returned to boarding school following coronavirus restrictions

Yalari News - June 2020


Yalari Newsroom

YAY! We’re back in business! We think?

2020 Yalari Dinners The coronavirus restrictions led to the postponement of our Yalari anniversary dinners across four states. The good news is, however, we have successfully secured new dates for later in 2020! The new dates are: Brisbane – 14 October 2020 Adelaide – 29th October 2020 Melbourne – 12th November 2020 Sydney – 20th November 2020 At this stage, we are uncertain about guest attendance limits and other restrictions. We will keep you posted as to when we can confidently sell tickets to our events. Yalari’s 15th Anniversary Dinners will be special evenings — celebrating our past and acknowledging our continued commitment to creating positive change for Indigenous children, their families and their communities. You will also hear the personal journeys of our students and alumni as we reflect on 15 years of dreaming, believing, inspiring and achieving!

This National Volunteer Week we take the opportunity to say ‘THANK YOU’ to the many wonderful and generous volunteers we have at Yalari. This year’s theme “Changing Communities. Changing Lives” is at the heart of everything we do as an organisation. To all our volunteers, past and present, we love you and appreciate everything you have done to help our children be the best they can be.


Intership success story!

Congratulations to Yalari alumna, Lyric Hearn for completing her Yalari internship. Lyric has been working within the Yalari office for the past 6 months, gaining on-the-job experience across all areas of the organisation. She now plans to continue studying her Cert IV in Child, Youth and Family Intervention with TAFE QLD and is planning to enrol in a Creative Writing Degree at QUT (Queensland University of Technology) later this year. We will miss seeing Lyric’s smiling face around the office!


#yalari #generationalchange #indigenous #educatingindigenouschildren Did you know that Yalari is on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter? Follow us and keep up-to-date on what’s happening around the Yalari community.




If you would like to submit a story, provide feedback, share some photos or have any questions regarding our publication, please contact Alison MacKenzie - comms@yalari.org. 4

Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years

Yalari Student Support and Development

Supporting our students


Yalari Student Support Manager, Gary O’Brien explains how the team is overcoming recent challenges with positive effect.

Gary O’Brien - Student Support Manager

What a privilege it is to lead a team, now topping 15 staff across Australia, as they continue to support students in the same way it’s always been at Yalari: with compassion, openness, respect, resilience, inclusiveness and excellence.

The student support team have been a significant part of Yalari since it began in 2006 with three students at Toowoomba Grammar School and The Glennie School. Founding husband and wife team Waverley and Llew quickly became ‘uncle and aunty’ to those first few students and as the student numbers steadily increased, so has the student support team. I came along in 2011 as the Student Support Officer (SSO) for Sydney and discovered something incredibly special about Yalari. I was invited to participate in the Year 9 boys Outback Camp that year and remember being amazed at the level of connectedness amongst the boys from different towns and communities across Australia. Sitting around the campfire with our students as they yarned about culture, their home lives, experiences at boarding school and dreams for the future, I sensed the students felt safe, felt heard and relished the fact others around them were on similar journeys. Any adult that’s attended one of these camps feels as if they have received an education themselves. It’s been the same with every Yalari camp that I’ve attended since. Inevitable nerves and the sometimes-awkward hellos from the students quickly give way to a

camaraderie that is usually reserved for families. And of course, Waverley and Llew are still around and remain uncle and aunty to a student cohort now larger than 200, with 350 alumni. After doing a few different things at Yalari I now find myself in the position of Student Support Manager. What a privilege it is to lead a team, now topping 15 staff across Australia, as they continue to support students in the same way it’s always been at Yalari: with compassion, openness, respect, resilience, inclusiveness and excellence. These are the core values we live by at Yalari and the same core values we see in our students every single day. Every child is unique, as is their story and journey. The highs and lows each of them face, the triumphs and tears, the homesickness, the academic prowess, the sporting achievements – our Support Officers see it all. And in being there alongside students physically, emotionally, mentally and academically our SSO’s will all tell you they have learnt as much from students as students have learnt from them. In these unusual times, although the methods may have changed, the level of support has not. I’ve particularly enjoyed watching (and occasionally zoom-bombing) video conference calls SSO’s have arranged with students who are learning from home. Physical distance, it seems, has not broken the strong bonds formed over time. Now perhaps more than ever, the team play a vital role in working closely with students, parents, and partner school staff to ensure the education of our Indigenous children from regional, rural and remote communities is as much of a reality as it’s always been.

Yalari News - June 2020


Yalari Student Support and Development

Appreciation is the best motivation! While our students were learning from home, we asked them what they were missing and what they felt grateful for. Joy Blurton Great Southern Grammar School

Jay Campbell The Southport School

I would like to thank everyone who supported me no matter what and I would thank them for helping me learn new things.

Thank you to my SSO, Barry Lee, for his online support. He has helped me with my math and does some private tutoring sessions with me and has made me understand math better.

L’eja Pigram Great Southern Grammar School I am grateful that my teachers are happy to have me back! I missed being in the classroom.

Holly Coffison St Hilda’s School I have missed the academic support from the housemothers and teachers, the rigid routine and my friends.

Appreciation Station

Shakita Foster The Glennie School I want to let those generous people know that I am getting things done whether online or in life. I definitely do have setbacks but I overcome them with your help, thank you.

Tahlia See Geelong Grammar School I enjoy being at home but I miss being with my friends. We still keep in touch but it is not the same as walking to the dining hall or to classes together. Thank you to our supporters.

Chelsea Edwards Kinross Wolaroi School

Chloe King Geelong Grammar School

I miss having a set routine and having face-to-face help. I am grateful for everything our supporters do for us Yalari kids. It is really appreciated and I hope you are doing well.

One thing I would say to the people helping us is a massive thank you for helping us through this difficult time and thank you for all the support you have given us as a YALARI family.

Noah Allen St Ignatius’ College, Riverview

Cheree Whymann Scotch College, Adelaide

Thank you very much for supporting me! I am trying my best to get through this tough period of time in the world, and your generosity through sponsoring me to go to one of the best schools in Australia is helping me get through it.

I understand that not every state in Australia feels the safety and security I feel being in Adelaide right now, so I thank you for presenting me with more than an opportunity but now a safe place during this pandemic. I wish everyone is able to stay as safe as possible during this time. Thank you.


Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years

Mistique Beresford Clayfield College

Kiara Sutton Kambala

Thank you for being a part of these supportive scholarships.

I would like to thank everyone who continues to support me and help me get through this hard time. I would like to say a big thank you to my mum who has really been there to support me and motivate me to complete Year 12 during this hard time.

Braydon Mundy Shore

Jye Peters Shore

The thing I’ve missed most about studying at school is being able to get help from other boys and just being able to interact within the classroom and around the boarding house.

I would just like to thank the supporters for having faith and believing in all of us.

Thank you so much for your help and support in Indigenous education and giving us an opportunity to make change within our country.

Xavier Stanley The Southport School

Cassandra Peris Geelong Grammar School I appreciate being at school and getting the work done at the right time.

Mikayla Dowd Geelong Grammar School

Myffanwy Wilson Abbotsleigh

I have missed all my mates and not having Thank you for your hard work and being able my teachers with me. To the Yalari sponsors, to support us through these hard times. thank you for everything you are doing.

Jaycee Sellings Geelong Grammar School Thank you so much for allowing me to be able to continue doing my schooling online. Without going to GGS I probably wouldn’t be able to do school to the level I can with the resources that are provided by my school.

Connor McGovern-Cubby Churchie I just would like to thank our sponsors and let them know I appreciate everything they’ve done for Yalari. It really does change lives.

Imani Austin Scotch College, Adelaide Thank you so much for your support over this extremely hard time.

Whilst studying at home I have missed being around my friends. In isolation I’m obviously unable to visit them and, although being around my family is appreciated, I miss laughing as much as I do when I’m with my friends. Thank you for all you’re doing, no amount of words can describe my gratitude. This opportunity is incredible and even when proving difficult, you are there helping me succeed. I feel blessed and would like to say you are all amazing people.

Taj Krasna The Southport School Thank you so much and we are doing great at school and keeping up with work and study. Noah Smith Churchie To my sponsors, please don’t worry too much about the work I’m doing at this time. I’m doing my best to let current events affect my work as little as possible and I’m motivated despite being unsure of how my schooling year may turn out. Yalari News - June 2020


Yalari Partner Schools



By Dale Bennett (Deputy Principal) and Kara Cleary (Head of Girls Boarding) - Scotch College, Adelaide


he last few months have been unsettling, presented unknowns and at times left us all feeling vulnerable. From adversity comes great things and the great thing we have seen at Scotch is that it is the everyday people in our lives who come together and can achieve extraordinary things. When we heard SA schools would likely open for Term 2 we knew we needed to get our boarders back from their homes to our Rosevear boarding family. Importantly our interstate boarders needed to have every opportunity to join their classmates at Scotch…even if it meant we would need to overcome some perplexing circumstances. Most boarders had been learning remotely for about five weeks in Term 1 and whilst most were able to adapt, for some the challenges were huge. We had one student who was living on a boat near his grandparent’s apartment unable to live with them due to the risk, numerous students who had inadequate internet and there were those who found the online environment not that easy to learn in. We also had a huge incentive. If we could get our boarders home and through quarantine requirements, we could also reinstate our classroom program full time. Naturally there was a huge desire from students and staff for that to happen.

ACTION STATIONS… Kara Cleary, our Head of Girls Boarding, set things in motion. Having heard about NT parents who were keen to get their kids back to their Adelaide schools, Kara approached the amazing Tracey Haye, NT politician and mother of a boy at Saint Peters College, who had organised a flight back from Alice to Adelaide for station kids. Kara and Meredith Ridgway, our boarding administrator, reached out to the NT Cattlemens Association, the Royal Flying Doctors Association and Abstudy to pull together a plan to get our students back. You can only imagine the numerous phone calls to families and organisations that were required. The effort was phenomenal and individuals we came across in the planning were amazing. Ashley Manicaros from the Cattlemens Association, having no connection with the school or the families, selflessly liaised with RFDS to get our charter flight from Alice Springs to Adelaide. Meredith worked with the Abstudy team in Darwin to coordinate transport and flights for 7 Yalari students to meet up and make a flight from Darwin to Alice within 48 hours of departure. They were joined by three more boarders in Alice for the flight back to Adelaide. In the meantime, we had two families opt to drive their four boarders to the NT/

SA border where they were met by the Boys Head of Boarding, David Scholz, who travelled the epic 13 hours to collect them to turn around and travel 13 hours back with four very excited boys in the SUV. The vehicle was actually owned by one of the Darwin families who had left it in Adelaide for their use when visiting. The highlight for those students was not only breakfast at Coober Pedy but running out of petrol as they coasted into Glendambo having underestimated just how far you can get on an empty tank. At this time, another boarder had grabbed the opportunity to fly from NSW to ensure that all our interstate students could isolate together. To get all these boarders to Scotch, we needed to work with the NT Police, the SA Police and Health Authorities and other government officials finalising paperwork for travel and isolation plans once the students had reached Adelaide.

LIFE IN ISOLATION Back in Adelaide we knew we had to have 13 students in isolation that needed to be cared for the best we could in these unique circumstances. The decision was made to use a wing of Rosevear to house the boys and Jackie Newbegin, the College Nurse, kindly offered for the

Jacob Nichaloff

Class of 2015 | Scotch College, Adelaide

“Since I have left Scotch College, I made the decision to stay in Adelaide to pursue my music career. I have been making music for the past 2 years and since then I have launched singles including ‘My People’ recently passing 110,000 views on YouTube & more. I have recently signed a management deal with a company based in Melbourne which has opened up many opportunities for me in the music industry - including Triple J recently playing my tracks on radio and I have been Spotlight Artist on their home pages twice. When I am not working on music, I work for an Indigenous company called Palya which was formed in 2019 to focus on supporting Indigenous communities across Australia. Palya contributes each year to the Mai Wiru Foundation and provides support to communities and distributing products up through the APY Lands.”


Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years



Educating Indigenous Children


Dreaming, believing inspiring and achieving

A holistic education and whole life preparation

Working together since 2008 to educate and empower Indigenous children

four Yalari girls to stay at her house. To make this happen it meant there were some room shuffles in Rosevear, and Meredith generously hosted some Year 10 boys to ensure there were enough beds for everyone who had already returned. Scotch is incredibly proud of how each student completed their isolation. It required them to wear masks when in common areas and only communicate with each other from a distance. Staff were in the wing also to communicate from afar and assist with prep time and any other worries. Care packages and visits to windows were provided by many members of the College community to help keep up morale. The boys and girls definitely now share a unique bond with each other.

THE NEW NORMAL Classes are no longer online, and school feels relatively normal. All our boarders continue to adapt to guidelines and students are learning to live with a new set of protocols that have never been required to be in place. Our restrictions are slowly easing and while there will be some things that may not return to normal for months (or maybe never!) we know that having our community back together is one of our most important achievements this year.

It would be remiss of us not to share one more quick story of our Yalari student from Victoria, Cheree Whymann, who made the decision to return to Adelaide over the holiday break to ensure that she could begin classes at the start of term. Living in Mildura usually means a 4½ hour drive home but due to boarder restrictions her journey took more than 24 hours having to fly to Melbourne, stay over night and then fly to Adelaide the following day. Then to go into a home-stay situation where she had limited opportunities to interact with her hosts.

Nara McMillan Class of 2016 | Scotch College, Adelaide

Scotch College is an independent, Uniting Church, co-educational, day and boarding school, located on two adjacent campuses in Torrens Park and Mitcham, innersouthern suburbs of Adelaide, South Australia. The school currently caters for approximately 1,000 students including more than 100 boarders in Years 7 to 12. Yalari’s introduction to Scotch began with old boy Allan Miller, an Indigenous man from Alice Springs, who was also a member of the first Yalari board. The partnership began immediately when we met the newly appointed Principal Tim Oughton in 2007, who later served on the Yalari board from 2009-2014.

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Yalari Alumni

10 Current Yalari Scholars

“I’m employed by Territory Families in Katherine as an Aboriginal Community Worker. I have been here for two and half years. My role entails conducting investigations alongside the Child Protection Practitioners, acting as a cultural broker between families and the department and also working with children and families to ensure positive outcomes. I provide cultural advice and advocate for my mob where I can to ensure that cultural safety as well as child safety needs are being met.

New students in 2020

I do a lot of remote travel (which is my favourite part of the job) to places such as Borroloola, Ngkurrur, Bulman, Lajamanu, Kalkarindji and many more. I have built a lot of trusting relationships with our families and children and want to continue doing this as a career path to help keep our kids with families on country.”


I am being supported by my employer to study- I am about to finish my Diploma in Child, Youth & Family Intervention in July and after this I will enrol to do a Grad Cert to become a Child Protection Practitioner which will take about a year to complete.


Starting with three scholarship students in 2008, Yalari’s partnership with Scotch has grown into an incredible story of mutal respect and understanding; one that has the seen us work together to educate and empower over 30 Indigneous children over the past 12 years. We look forward to many more years of helping Indigenous children learn, dream, achieve and succeed through education.

Partnership formed Yalari News - June 2020


Yalari Partners, Donors and Sponsors

Every ticket counts... Humanitix is the not-for-profit ticketing platform that gives events impact. They make event management a breeze and give 100% of the profits from booking fees to education projects, including Yalari. As an event organiser, there’s no better feeling than to announce in your marketing material or at your event that you’ve helped fund someone’s education. It’s why hundreds of schools across Australia and New Zealand now exclusively use Humanitix. The idea for Humanitix was hatched in 2015 on the rooftop of a burnt-out building in Sri Lanka, where co-founders Adam McCurdie and Josh Ross were camping. That night they made a pact and danced around the campfire – they would make this work. On returning to Sydney, Adam quit his job as a consultant, while Josh shared half his salary. Together they worked day, night and all weekend to build what is now the world’s fastest-growing ticketing platform. Humanitix powers thousands of events, from the Australian Parliament House to International Women’s Day to the Manly Inflatable Boat race. Along the way, Humanitix has won the support of the Google and Atlassian Foundations, as well as ambassadors like John Eales. “I love that Humanitix supports Indigenous Education, as I feel we need to embrace our heritage to ensure we are a proud, kind and caring society,” says Eales, who’s as delighted at being a Humanitix ambassador as he is at being a Wallabies Rugby legend. The partnership between Humanitix and Yalari has also gone from strength to strength. From using the service for our fundraising dinners and events, to promoting the platform among our partner schools, it has been an incredible journey so far. Five of Yalari’s partner schools are now using Humanitix with discussions underway with several more. Humanitix offers special rates for schools which means it doesn’t cost any more to support Yalari via your event ticket sales. “It’s so exciting to see the impact grow,” says Josh. “Our event organisers are often surprised to hear that our fees are lower than other platforms. It doesn’t cost any extra for their event to have an incredible impact.” To find out more about how your school, business or organisation can use Humanitix for your events and contribute to positive education outcomes, please visit www.humanitix.com.


Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years

Dan’s our man! Long-time Yalari supporter, Dan Pittorino has done it again! From running a marathOn through the Moroccan desert in 2017 to hosting Yalari information evenings in the middle of London, Dan never has Yalari far from his heart. “So, due to the lock-down, there is no dinner to attend nor any wild race on the calendar to compete in, to garner support for Yalari,” Dan wrote in an email to his friends and colleagues. “You might remember two Indigenous boys I had spoken about for 5 or 6 years. They have both graduated from Riverview and are off making a success of themselves in their chosen fields,” he continues. “Now, excitingly, there is a lovely young Indigenous girl who has started on a Yalari scholarship in Sydney, at Kambala, who could use our support.” Dan encouraged his network of friends to sponsor him per kilometre as he jogged up a total of 65.5km, and raised nearly $2,000. A huge thank you to Dan and your troop of fabulous supporters. What a wonderful gesture of your ongoing commitment to educating and empowering Indigenous children.

Splash for Cash Success! Matthew Games - Chief Financial Officer, Findex

Waverley Stanley and Llew Mullins

Findex, one of Australia’s leading providers of integrated financial advisory and accounting services, has demonstrated its commitment to connecting young people with their full potential, providing equal access to education for disadvantaged youth via the Findex Community Fund. With offices in over 100 locations across Australia and New Zealand, Findex’s Annual Leaders Conference creates the opportunity for 400 of the business’ leaders to reconnect and focus on strategic direction. For Findex and its network of 3,000 people, connecting with and giving back to local communities is at the centre of its values. At Findex’s Leaders Conference held on the Gold Coast in March

2020, Waverley and Llew saw firsthand the generosity and passion from the Findex teams during their ‘Splash for Cash’ fundraising event. A collection of 10 of the Findex senior team put up their hand (after it was gently twisted) and sacrificed their party clothes to the risk of getting a splash while they raised cash! Their sacrificial soaking was well worth it, raising $18,000 from staff which the Findex Community Fund matched the funds raised, to provide a total donation of $36,000. Findex is incredibly proud to support Yalari in promoting generational change within Indigenous communities and providing access to education for the Yalari scholars.

Danielle Maxwell - Director of the Findex Community Fund

Anthony Venneri - Executive Head of Accounting and Tax, Findex

A huge thank you to the wonderful staff at Findex for getting behind Indigenous education in Australia and digging deep!


YA L ARI G O L F DAY Join us in empowering Indigenous children to dream, achieve and succeed through education

23 October 2020 Indooroopilly Golf Club • 7:00am - 3:00pm Teams of 4 • Breakfast 18 holes including carts • Gourment BBQ Lunch Refreshments • Prizes


Limited sponsorship opportunities available!


Golfers, book your spot! Yalari is hosting a charity golf day and we would love your company. Join us for this inaugural event and have a fun day of golf while empowering Indigenous children through education. We are currently seeking expressions of interest from players, sponsors or both.

For registration or sponsorship enquiries, please contact Annette Fale on (07) 5665 8688, email fundraisingcoordinator@yalari.org or call 0405 852 669. Yalari News - March 2020


Yalari Partners, Donors and Sponsors

Making Good...

A philanthropic friendship Yalari relies on the support and friendship of many people and everyone has their own reasons for being a part of the Yalari family. Yalari supporters, Tim and Simon tell us what motivates them to be involved.


im and Simon met at the University of Queensland and got to know each other better at their first jobs out of uni. As young but naive bachelors, they moved to London at the same time and were two Brisbane boys ‘having a crack in the big smoke’. They shared similar traits and values having both grown up in close-knit, small-town Brisbane where warm memories of club sport, mateship, beer, the outdoors, and ‘calling-it-as-it-is’ all helped mould their friendship. “I think we both appreciate the beautiful simplicity of that mix,” Tim explains. Tim Wilson, a long-standing Yalari supporter, remembers seeing Yalari’s Founding Director, Waverley Stanley speak at the Australian Private Equity Conference in Cairns in about 2007 as a key speaker at the closing dinner. “I’d seen the over-the-top opulence, wealth, and ‘look at me, I’m the smartest bloke in the room’ behaviour for three days, and then Waverley got up, captured the room, and was straight away the most important thing I’d witnessed at the conference, or for years, for that matter,” recalls Tim.

Tim and Simon in Eng

land in the 90s

Tim, Simon and friends enjoy a recent ski holiday

“I walked straight to the bottom of the stage, and when Waverley walked down, I accosted him and said, ‘I want to get involved!’ Ever since, Tim has been busily volunteering at Yalari, working on introducing business associates, family and friends, and encouraging them to join the cause. Tim has also generously donated his time as a member of the Brisbane Dinner Committee, Regional Council and provided financial and in-kind support. Tim introduced his sister, Lou Wilson to Waverley shortly after their first meeting, and she has since been volunteering and working at Yalari for over ten years. “At a day-to-day level, I want to help increase community awareness of Yalari, so that more people and corporates can support its sustained growth,” Tim says. “At a grander level, I want to see the Yalari alumni grow into pillars of Australian society and see a marked improvement of the outcomes for Indigenous Australians.” When speaking with his old friend, Simon Fenwick, about his

Education is the greatest “leveller” for people less privileged, and supporting a decent education-for-all is the best and fairest means to achieve meaningful change. - Tim Wilson

My hope is that Indigenous kids have the same educational opportunities as my kids. Sounds optimistic, but mere talking won’t help. We have to start somewhere! - Simon Fenwick


Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years

Tim with former Prime Minister, Tony Abbott discussing Indigenous issues (2016)

Tim (far right) as part of the Yalari Brisbane Dinner Committee (2015)

involvement with Yalari, Simon was immediately interested. “I’m involved with other Indigenous and regional education charities, so when Tim mentioned Yalari, it piqued my interest,” Simon explains. “From there, I met Lou, then Waverley. Tim and I both share the same views on the importance of giving back — that alignment in personal values is crucial.” When deciding on whether to support a particular non-profit project or organisation, Simon will often do his own research on governance and leadership, but admits “having friends like Tim helps for vetting the organisations. It’s extra due diligence.” For Simon, who has lived almost half his life overseas, he appreciates how fortunate we are to live in Australia. However, upon his return in 2015, he struggled to comprehend the terrible Indigenous health outcomes that had barely changed in decades. “Apologising may have made many feel better, but the actual outcomes suggested that we need practical solutions. In my travels it became clear to me how important education is to

lifting people out of poverty and letting them reach their potential, wherever that may be,” Simon says. His belief in Yalari has led Simon to make a $200,000 contribution to the Mary Boydell Endowment Fund (MBEF). The MBEF is an investment fund established by Yalari in 2016 for the purpose of securing Yalari’s financial future and ultimately funding Yalari and its work in perpetuity. As someone who would like to be remembered as ‘tough but fair’ Simon believes in the importance of staying true to our philanthropic goals even during these uncertain times. “During tough times like now, many have to tighten belts. However, we can’t turn away from organisations like Yalari. Their groundwork will pay off in decades and centuries, it’s not a short term fix,” he says. It is only through the belief, generosity and community spirit of supporters like Tim and Simon, that Yalari can continue working to empower Indigenous children through education. Our heartfelt thanks to our selfless donors for making this happen.

Mary Boydell Endowment Fund Giving today for a stronger tomorrow Create your personal legacy... Like all gifts that benefit Yalari, endowed gifts contribute to the ongoing high quality of educational opportunities and support for Indigenous children. Endowments are particularly powerful because they deliver a dependable, perpetual source of funding. Your gift to Yalari’s Mary Boydell Endowment Fund (MBEF) is an investment in the future of Yalari—one that fulfills our shared vision of educating and empowering Indigenous children now and for many years to come.

For a confidential discussion about how you can transform the lives of Indigenous children, please call Lou Wilson - Endowment Fund Executive.

0414 471 362 endowment@yalari.org

Benefits of contributing: • A unique opportunity to create your legacy

• Invitations to special events

• Tax-effective

• Your chance to do something extraordinary

• Naming opportunities

Find out more...

www.yalari.org/ MBEF

• Donor acknowledgement Yalari News - June 2020


Yalari Alumni

Jodene Garstone Class of 2016 | Geelong Grammar School Right now, I am in my final year of my Arts degree majoring in Peace and Conflict Studies. I have plans to continue studying in Canberra. I have applied and I am just waiting to hear back from the university. This semester I started interning with Linda Burney as part of The Australian National Internship Program. It was just an amazing experience to get to know the ins-and-outs of parliament and to sit in on meetings, especially since the country has been in crisis management mode since Christmas with the fires and now COVID-19. It has given me a new perspective on the Australian Government and politics in general which has been an invaluable learning experience. Unfortunately, because of Coronavirus, my placement was cut short however I am still completing my 8,000-word research report for her from home.

Tye Bedford Class of 2017 St Peter’s College, Adelaide The past year I have been in Halls Creek working at the local high school. I decided to then move back to Adelaide at the start of this year 2020 to play Aussie rules. I have been doing pre-season training for the last couple of months in Adelaide but since the coronavirus pandemic shut down all sports, I made the decision to fly back home to Halls Creek. Once the Western Australia border reopens, I’ll be going back to Adelaide as soon as possible.

I have flourished so much more since going to ANU and there were so many times that I just wanted to give up, but I have learnt that the longer you stay and the harder you try the more you are rewarded.

Catching up

with our inspiring Alumni Georgia Bayles

Class of 2016 | Rockhampton Grammar School I am currently studying Enrolled Nursing at CQU in Rockhampton. While studying I have a job out in the mines at Saraji - Dysart QLD driving dump trucks. It is something completely different to what I would normally do and I’m loving every bit of it!

Elizabeth Mahon

Jamie Sampson Class of 2011 Farrer Memorial Ag School I am currently relieving in the Aboriginal Community Liaison Officer role for School Services based at the Moree, NSW office. My substantive role is the Aboriginal Education Officer at Moree Secondary College. I also work full time as a Drug and Alcohol Worker at the Moree Aboriginal Residential Rehabilitation Service. I love both of my roles as I get to work with the future leaders of our community and also support our mob battling with trauma and addiction.


Yalari - Celebrating 15 Years

Class of 2015 | The Glennie School The Aboriginal Medical Service that I work in (GP Clinic), has been tirelessly working through Coronavirus. Like many other clinics, we have implemented telephone consults, car park reviews and drive through flu clinics. The number of influenza immunisations that have been given in the past month has definitely exceeded last year’s figure, and it’s still rising. We are continuing to provide ongoing services to the Indigenous community to ensure they are well looked after in addition to Coronavirus. On another note, I am able to see the finish line with my nursing degree as my last two placements have been allocated. Like most alumni and students (I’m assuming), the transition to completing studies online was tricky and hard to understand at first, but it’s now become easier. This current period is a very trying and stressful time, however, we’re very resilient people and I continue to applaud everyone for their individual and collective efforts to persevere through.

Molly Trindall Class of 2018 | Presbyterian Ladies College, Armidale I am currently living in Toowoomba, working for one of the biggest food processing companies, JBS Australia. I am working at their Toowoomba feedlot, called Beef City Feedlot. We also have our own abattoir on site. My role is part of the animal health and welfare team; our days can be as boring as you could think and as busy and exciting as anything.

Jamika Kelly-Wirth Class of 2018 The Glennie School/PLC Armidale

I am studying my Bachelor of Nursing at ACU in Sydney. I am also working as an Aboriginal Health Worker at Hornsby Hospital, where I look after the immunisation register for Indigenous kids. My work day consists of liaising with parents, doctors and the Australian Government. I have also been working casually as an assistant nurse and have helped during the Covid-19 crisis.

Mitch Whiteley Class of 2012 | St Ignatius’ College, Riverview I’m currently working as an executive in the JLL Western Sydney Industrial team. I seek to add value by providing the highest level of service, as well as creating effective and innovative strategies to achieve optimum results for my clients, working in divestment and leasing of industrial assets within Western Sydney. In terms of face-to-face meetings and inspections within our market during the Covid-19 period, we have new processes to stay safe and social distance ourselves from others with a number of precautions taken to ensure our safety whilst at work. For example, JLL has a week A and week B team rotation to be physically present in the office which has brought some challenges, however it has also allowed me to go home to Geurie, NSW and enjoy some family time that I usually wouldn’t have during this time of the year; and for that I’m very grateful. To the rest of the Yalari family out there, stay safe during this uncertain time and hopefully we can catch up very soon.

Mahlia Peachey Class of 2015 | Abbotsleigh I have just returned to work as a Health Informatics Officer (data) at the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service after 7 months maternity leave. As challenging as it can be, motherhood has been the most amazing experience. I have also started studying at Monash University with the goal of becoming a doctor. I’m still deciding what I would like to specialise in.

We all have a minimum of three horses for work and we ride every pen of cattle every single day for our eight-day shift. We pull out sick or injured cattle and once all this is done, we put them through our “hospital” shed and they all get treated and transferred into hospital pens. I feel as though this is a very different industry than what many of my fellow Yalari friends have gotten into but it’s an industry I love. I am also studying a Bachelor of Agricultural Management and Production through the University of New England. It is a bit of a struggle keeping up with a full-time job and studying but it’s worth it. On top of all that I am training a few of my own horses and have a few (too many!) client horses too, but training is my passion and I love doing it everyday.

Todd Ellis Class of 2013 Toowoomba Grammar School

I am currently working for the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment in the Crown Land area. We have not been too affected at the moment just working from home, which I am personally a huge fan of! Also, part of the job is a completion of a Certificate III in Business which has also continued through COVID-19. The time at home has been great with lots of lunchtime dog walks!

Yalari News - June 2020


You can provide much-needed student support during this difficult time.

We know many are struggling and that these are hard times... The unprecedented events of recent months have challenged our whole Yalari community, especially our children and support staff. Our boarding students were sent home, away from their schools, amid the nationwide lockdown.

We have had to innovatively adapt the way we deliver our student support services, working tirelessly to help students move through these challenges and get them on the road back to boarding school. For many, that won’t be until Term 3.

Many of our students have found the situation physically and emotionally taxing. Fear of falling behind, feeling overwhelmed or stressed, disconnection and isolation, and lack of connectivity with peers are some of the difficulties being expressed to our student support officers by the children.

For many of our students, back to school does not mean back to normal. That’s why, to meet the emerging and unforeseen needs of our students, we are committing to upskill all student support officers and Yalari staff in the areas of Indigenous mental health, wellbeing and cultural competency.

If you are in a position to support us, your generosity will ensure every student has the confidence, skills and support to get through this crisis and be even more empowered to learn, dream, achieve and succeed through quality education.

To make your end of financial year donation, please visit www.yalari.org www.yalari.org

Educating Indigenous Children WIN20YALANEWS