On Friday 26th of May 2017 the Dripstone Stars program participated in the community event ‘National Sorry Day’ at the Jingili Watergardens. National Sorry Day marks the date the Australian Government made an official apology to Indigenous Australians. Stars students served tea/coffee and damper to members of the Stolen Generation and had the opportunity to listen to their stories of strength and adversity.
Feature photo: Tamiah-Rae Wilson and Ekyra Newton-Aragon serving the ladies from Stolen Generation coffee and damper.
On Thursday of week 7, Stars Year 11 students participated in a full day of activities In recognition of their hard work and excellent attitude during term 2. Our day started off with a bacon and egg breakfast in the Stars Room, before we set off for Crocosaurus Cove in the city. We then headed out to the Darwin War Museum to learn about the Bombing of Darwin and have a look at the remaining World War II cannon placements around East Point. It was then down to Cullen Bay for fish and chips for lunch. To finish our day we took a refreshing dip at the Waterfront on the Big Buoy waterpark. This was probably the highlight of the day as the girls took turns in bouncing each other off the inflatable slides. The day was an excellent way for the girls to reset and focus on Stage 1 exams coming up during week 8. CSC would like to wish all Year 11 students who are sitting exams at the end of this term the best of luck.
This term at Stars in Yirrkala we have had a big focus on giving back to our community. One highlight was organising our first ever car wash. Many teachers and staff at Yirrkala School as well as community members provided vehicles which were in dire need of tender love and care. Our young women had a blast and felt wonderful giving back to their community and has inspired some of them to begin a small business doing car detailing.
As part of the Department of Education’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Program, Stars Foundation was lucky enough to be invited to join an industry tour around Katherine Research Station. The industry tours focused on where STEM subjects can lead, how they are utilised in the workplace and what career pathways can be forged. Thank you to Sandy Talbot for organising the tour and inviting us to come along.
The focus of the recent after school activity was improving engagement at school. The Stars girls got to enjoy an afternoon snack whilst working on setting goals to help increase their attendance and commitment to school. This was followed by a relaxing and healthy walk along the beach at the beautiful East Point.
Seven year 7 and 8 girls who achieved great behaviour and high attendance in the first half of term 2 were rewarded with a day out and a movie night. It was important for the girls to take time out and recognise their successes and achievements! The girls spent the day fishing, spending time chilling out beside the beautiful Mary Ann Dam, playing games, bushwalking and as the sun was setting learning pois. Pois is a performance art, involving swinging tethered weights through a variety of rhythmical and geometric patterns. A great team bonding activity which challenges the brain and fine motor skills! The evening was finished off with a healthy chicken salad wrap, banana split for desert and a game of ‘murder in the dark’ before settling in to watch two movies.
On Tuesday 16th of May, eight year 9 Stars girls attended the Katherine RAAF Base for a work experience day. It was a fantastic day with a focus on how the girls can get into the RAAF when they leave school and they got to experience all of the different roles within the Air Force. The girls got to experience a number of different activities such as a workout conducted by a personal trainer, sat in the huge fire trucks, ate lunch in the mess hall and got to get up close and personal with the fighter jets. A very successful day.
On the 9th May the Stars Foundation held a community BBQ in the Stars room at Katherine High School. The BBQ was a huge success with many families joining, and it was wonderful to have the parents of the students we work with each day in the Stars room. The girls were all very proud and excited to show their parents and siblings photos of the different activities that they have been involved in throughout the year so far. We are very much looking forward to our next community BBQ on the 16th May at Rockhole Community.
Stars students were asked to participate in dance workshops at the YMCA during week 3 of Term 2, the workshops ran by Katherine Regional Arts. Ghenoa Gela from Move it Mob Style, choreographed a dance routine for the girls to learn. The girls showed commitment and motivation to the week-long rehearsals with a core group taking time out of their weekend to film a video clip to be shown at the Katherine Junk Festival later this year. Congratulations girls on all your hard work!
Yirrkala and Nhulunbuy Stars teamed up to venture out to Wanuwuy (Cape Arnhem) for a one-night camping adventure. The trip was offered to students who have showed commitment to increasing their attendance and growing within the classroom and in their engagement with their peers.
Our time was largely spent hunting (a few cheeky beach naps were snuck in!), as an incredible array of native foods was on offer- the girls spent hours collecting maypal (oysters) and luring in fish with hand reels.
Program Officer Rosie led an expedition into the mangroves at low tide to gather dhanpala (mud mussels), which were smoked on hot coals on the beach and shared with the Clontarf boys camping further up the beach. The boys continued the exchange of food, spearing and delivering fish and fresh crays to us to enjoy for breakfast.
After a night curled up in our swags under a full moon, we journeyed to the flood plains for more dhanpala and a game of cricket.
The camp, with its focus on participation in cultural activities and healthy lifestyles, was fantastic for our wellbeing. Nhulunbuy and Yirrkala Stars look forward to many more shared activities together.