To educate, to inspire, to make a difference – JPC, Yalari partner school
Back (L to R): Mr Norm Kerley, Shelley Hunt, Andrew Casey, Koolee Harbour, Stephen Bush-Blanasi, Mia Nakata, Kyoshi Nakata-Binjuda, Shauna Dhagapan, Anthony Doidge
Front: (L to R): Possa Drummond, Harmony Bush, Ginaya Fernando, Peter Sambono, Laura McGrady, Anaiyah Vaculka
JPC offers a rich and diverse curriculum that enables Indigenous children to become confident, committed members of the community while remaining firmly grounded in their cultural roots.
The partnership between Yalari and JPC began in 2015, when two Year 7 Yalari scholars moved into the brand-new boarding village. The boarding facilities and school environment were so well received by our scholars, the Yalari cohort has expanded to 13.
“John Paul College and Yalari enjoy an outstanding partnership because the students are motivated to be here and they connect very well with our ethos,” explains Deputy Headmaster, Mr Norm Kerley.
The school encourages the students to share their culture and help raise awareness among the non-Indigenous members of the school community. Throughout the campus, they have created authentic spaces and symbols which represent Indigenous cultures. These include a yarning circle, a bush tucker grove and Indigenous gardens.
“They [the Yalari students] are a wonderful influence in our boarding village and contribute to all aspects of boarding life,” Mr Kerley says.
All the way from the community of Thursday Island, Possa Drummond has just started her first year at JPC.
“I want to go to John Paul College so I can get a better education and get a good job when I grow up,” she says.
“I look forward to learning about other cultures and languages at school.”
Founding Director of Yalari, Waverley Stanley is pleased to see the Yalari students, most of which are from remote areas of Australia, be supported and nurtured by the school community.
“We are so proud to be part of JPC’s growing Indigenous program which offers our students a unique mix of education and support, culture and empowerment,” he says.
And the JPC community really to do ‘walk-the walk’, having attending several of Yalari’s fundraising dinners and events.
“We are very grateful for the support JPC has shown not only to our children, but to our organisation as a whole,” Waverley says.
Seven years on, it is easy to see that the Yalari/JPC association is a long and rewarding one.
“Yalari and John Paul College have united in our support of Indigenous students and we look forward to welcoming further students in the future, watching them graduate and following them as they find their own special place in the world,” Mr Kerley says.
“They will always be part of the John Paul College Family and of our worldwide alumni network.”
Waverley, Llew and the JPC crew!
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