More than 40 students from Swan Christian, Ellenbrook Christian, Southern Hills and Mundaring will descend on Bedfordale today to learn about Filipino culture and ways that they can serve others in readiness for the Leavers2Leaders 2019 trip in November.
Ten years on from the first small trip that saw Scott Puzey and Paul Beacham take a handful of students to Manila in November 2009, the Leavers2Leaders 2019 initiative is now running across four secondary schools in the SCEA network, with a masterclass in Special Needs learning being given this morning by Tabatha Grubb from Kalamunda Christian School.
Students will learn about sign language, dealing with special needs students and the concept of thankfulness and contentment as part of the trip preparation.
Corporate sponsor OfficeMax WINC donated a sea container earlier this year which was filled by the students with wheelchairs, local community donations and school stationery for the students of the La Carlota Special Need School in the Philippines.
OfficeMax WINC representative Fiona Wallis said the companies were delighted to be able to support the students with the project.
“We’re here to inspire and support creativity and out-of-the-box thinking in schools by equipping teachers and learners with everything they need and this is a great example of this at work for the less fortunate,” she said.
SCEA students who choose to join the Leavers2Leaders trip take off for the Philippines from November 16-27 after the completion of the ATAR exams and spend ten days in rural Philippines learning how the third world exist on subsistence farming and visiting local churches that have developed strong bonds with SCEA staff over ten years of philanthropic initiatives.
Year 12 student Ngataaria Te Rito travelled to the third world country last year and will be going again this November.
“When we left last year I knew straight away that I wanted to do it again this year instead of going to leavers,” she said.
“There is some pretty interesting food over there and the most interesting I came across was balut, which is a developing bird embryo that is boiled and eaten from the shell.
“You crack it open, put a ton of salt on it and the put it down the hatch, but for me it didn’t quite go down the hatch.
“I did enjoy eating the fried sugar cane rats though, which they caught for us out on the fields.”
Since returning from last year’s trip Ngataaria has kept in touch with a few of the Filipino students, one of which she calls her “modern day pen-pal” thanks to communication via social media.
Southern Hills will be hosting a Quiz Night on September 7th to raise funds for the Special Needs school and more information can be found by clicking here.