20,000+ school students care about Indigenous Literacy

20,000+ school students care about Indigenous Literacy

It's estimated that more than 20,000 students are supporting our Foundation this year through Great Book Swaps and other fundraisers. Pre-schools, Primary Schools and High Schools from all over the country have registered for the day: schools from Badgerys Creek to North Cairns to Dalwallinu WA, and schools in every capital city. The varied list of school events includes:

  • The South Australian School for the Vision Impaired are holding a Great Book Swap and group readings.
  • In NSW a Juvenile Detention Centre is having a Pizza Day to raise money.
  • A Book Swap and other activities on the election day weekend run by Victoria University Secondary College.

Here are just some of the stories so far...

The Friend's School Tasmania
"There was a real buzz among the students swapping and buying books," said Naomi Connor, teacher at The Friend's School Tasmania. As well as the Book Swap, which was held as part of the Children's Book Week celebrations, there was a Quiz night and staff morning tea. The whole community embraced the cause and raised nearly $6,000. What and extraordinary effort!

 QLD's school's inspiring journey

"Reading gives you power ", says Cheryl Cavanagh, teacher librarian of St Peter Chanel Primary School, The Gap,  who raised over $1200 during Book Week last week for our Foundation.
"Our school has a very strong social justice ethic.  We also have a fantastic resourced library so it was good for the students to learn that some remote Indigenous communities do not have the same opportunities or access to resources".

Over 400 students at St Peter Chanel PS, aged 5-12 years old, worked with Dr Anita Heiss to write and prepare a book on different subjects covering a series of topics including totems, sacred places, identity and the Stolen Generation.  Their cumulative efforts were published and beautifully illustrated in a book called Where our Journey Begins.  In addition, each classes' 'journey' was complimented by a series of stunning artwork painted on 18 chairs.  These chairs were sold at two separate breakfasts during Book Week where Dr Heiss was a passionate and inspiring speaker.

Cheryl said that the project and resulting fundraiser marked a significant journey for the students and staff.  "Our journey began with look at Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Culture and everyone has learnt so much about Indigenous culture."

St Peter Chanel PS's donation will be presented at a school assembly to Queensland-based Founder Suzy Wilson in the near future.

What teachers are saying...


    "As a follow on to NAIDOC Week celebrations the Student Representative Council organised “Take the period off and read” initiative for Literacy week. Not only did this initiative make students aware of the issue of literacy in remote indigenous communities, but it reinforced the pleasure of picking up a book and reading for the love of it!"


    Karen Hines, Newcastle High School


    "Our school hosted The Great Book Swap during the National Literacy and Numeracy Week and the week after. We had a tremendous response from families with over 600 books collected, we managed to sell them all through gold coin donations and we raised $860 to go towards the Indigenous Literacy Foundation serving rural aboriginal communities with literacy resources." 

    Donna Synan, St Joseph's Primary School, Warragul


    "We held a Book Swap as part of NAIDOC Week. It was the first time we had done this and we were thrilled with the response we received from the students, staff and parents community. We plan to hold one in NAIDOC Week each year."

    Jan Saunders, McDowall State Primary School


  • Posted 28 August, 2013

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