From the Social Justice Co-ordinator, Geraldine Cullen
I’m very proud of the contribution our school makes to the wider community every week. One of the main aims of our Social Justice Outreach Program is to produce young men who want to contribute to our society. Young men who connect with groups on the edges of mainstream such as the homeless, aged, young disabled people. I’m always impressed by how respectful our boys are with the various groups with whom we connect.
Last Monday I was in Kings Cross on an Urban Walk with twenty Year 12 students. The students heard some pretty horrendous stories about drug abuse, mental illness and homelessness. They listened and asked lots of interesting questions. The guys who shared their stories commented on how respectful our boys were throughout the visit. Next year I will invite parents to accompany their sons on the Urban Walks.
Earlier in the term our Year 9 students volunteered to collect money for CanTeen – Young people living with Cancer. They raised a few thousand dollars at Bondi Junction train station.
Tevlin House has been collecting the toiletries for The Matt Talbot Christmas Appeal this year. Tevlin has been focusing on the issue of homelessness and supports The Talbot Hostel as its charity. Thanks to the generosity of the Waverley community, many of the homeless men of Sydney will receive a gift on Christmas morning.
On the Year 10 Reflection Days last week, guest speakers talked about human trafficking and homelessness. Students were able to discuss the issues and asked many questions. Some of our students were surprised to discover that people are trafficked into Australia to work in many industries including brothels, hospitality and farming.
Br Frank O’Shea visited our school this week. Frank manages The Ruben Centre situated in the one of Nairobi’s largest slums. The centre provides healthcare and education to 350,000 people. We have been supporting The Ruben through our Lenten Appeal the last two years.
Year 7 enjoyed a day this week at Watson’s Bay. Tim, our Aboriginal guide, grew up in La Perouse. He was incredibly knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna. We sampled all sorts of bush tucker and the students hung on his every word.
Thank you to all the staff and students who contributed to the Social Justice Program this year.
I wish you all a safe and happy Christmas.