14 August 2017

Community and Service

Friends of Lake Claremont

In just two weeks Year 10 boys have assisted in planting over 1000 seedlings on the Alfred Road side of the old Claremont Golf Course. Working with boys from Christ Church Grammar School, around a dozen Scotch boys have laboured to establish a forest of young plants that adds considerably to the already impressive plantings around the lake. The partnership with Friends of Lake Claremont volunteers has been a productive one for many years and the College should be proud of the work done by hundreds of boys.

FOLC planting

UCW Winter Appeal - Middle School

Donations for the Uniting Care West (UCW) Winter Appeal from the Senior School were collected by the agency in the last week of Autumn Term. An impressive quantity of non-perishable food items and clothing was amassed by House groups and gratefully received. This term Middle School donations were delivered to the new UCW Centre in Fremantle. Over 200 cans of food were donated and the staff at the Fremantle Centre were delighted. While not a kitchen for feeding the homeless, none-the-less the food will be distributed in emergency situations - which occur more frequently than ever now.

Homelessness Week

Homelessness Week recently sought to draw attention to the plight of the homeless in Australia. While CEO sleep-outs and the like do help to highlight the discomfort experienced by many without secure shelter, much more needs to be done throughout the year. Scotch plays a role in rolling and distributing 'Street Swags'. Women inmates at Bandyup Prison make the canvas outer covers. Scotch boys insert foam mattresses and then roll the swags ready for use. The agencies we are in contact with weekly say the problem of homelessness is getting more acute, with more women and children seeking emergency shelter. At times, the only shelter available, once all other options have been exhausted, is a 'Street Swag'.

Walk Against Abuse - Bravehearts

Last Saturday Scotch boys joined girls from PLC in a walk in aid of 'Bravehearts', an organisation whose core purpose is to educate, empower and protect Australian children from sexual assault. The "walk against abuse" started at Cottesloe with a 4.5km scenic route along the coast and finished at Leighton Beach Boulevard. This event was promoted at Chapel services in the first week of term when the role of 'Bravehearts' was highlighted in a harrowing recounting of a tragedy of abuse leading to the suicide of a young woman.

UnitedCare West Conference

UnitingCare West (UCW) held its annual Social Justice Conference last week. Teachers from Uniting Church schools involved in coordinating service activities were invited to attend. Workshops focused on how students reflect on service and on harnessing the collective resources of the network of Uniting Church schools to create a Social Justice Movement.

One of the speakers was UCW CEO, Sue Ash. She spoke on the topic, 'The Role of Not for Profits and Active Citizenship'. A major theme of her talk was the restructuring that is occurring within the social services sector as a result of funding changes - to a market-based model where the clients are able to purchase services - as opposed to an agency like UCW providing in response to need in the community. Individual funding coming through mechanisms such as the National Disability Insurance Scheme is changing fundamentally the way 'Not for Profit' agencies do their work.

Sue made a strong point to the school-based audience not to underestimate the role played by schools, no matter how disconnected the role might seem. UCW is keen for clients to feel a part of a community and the students in our schools are in that community - and valued. The relationship between schools and UCW is valued greatly.

At Scotch we have never been in doubt that what we do is valued and we hope that the students and their families know that all the work done and the contributions made to appeals is very much appreciated.

Mr Bill Cordner

Director of Community and Service