Term 2 is shaping up to be a busy term in the Wellbeing space! We are in the midst of planning plenty of engaging programs and workshops for year levels for the rest of the year, we are we getting ready to welcome two new counselling placement interns and we will be hosting our first whole school campaigns to acknowledge IDAHOBIT and National Sorry Day.
Our first whole school awareness/education campaign for the year will be IDAHOBIT next week on Thursday 18 May. IDAHOBIT (International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia) is about promoting inclusive, safe and respectful attitudes and environments for people of all sexualities and genders. Fairhills prides itself on being a safe place for all students and for IDAHOBIT we will be hosting some fun lunchtime activities in the library courtyard including a photobooth, pronoun board as well as some giveaways, including our very own IDAHOBIT stickers designed by our Q-Squad group. Thursday 18 May will be a CRAZY SOCK and CRAZY HAIR DAY for students and staff. So go rainbow in support of LGBTQIA+ inclusion. We thank Mariani, our Mental Health Practitioner for all her work and our Q-Squad group for their ideas, in bringing IDAHOBIT to life this year!
National Sorry Day
26 May is National Sorry Day. Mariani, our Mental Health Practitioner has been liaising with our Koori Education Support Officer to design and hopefully install a permanent timeline of indigenous culture and history which we hope to launch on National Sorry Day. Further details about Sorry Day activities will be circulated before the event. As a school we are committed to enhancing our acknowledgement to our indigenous history.
All schools are now mandated to have a Marrung Lead- which is the nominated voice and advocate for indigenous students, families and issues within the school community. As part of my role as Student Wellbeing Coordinator, I am also our nominated Marrung Lead and I welcome any of our Koori families to make contact with me if there is anything the school can do to further support the learning needs of your young person.
Mental Health First Aid Training
We have been fortunate to be granted funding from the Knox Council School Focussed Youth Support Program to support our staff to engage in Mental Health First Aid training in Term 3 as well as two of our Wellbeing team to train to become Teen Mental Health First Aid Instructors. This means that we will be able to deliver Mental First Aid training to our students in a rolling program each year, starting in 2024. Research tells us that young people are more likely to talk to their friends when they are struggling. This will equip our students to recognise the signs that someone is not coping, to respond appropriately in the moment and to help direct someone to relevant supports. We are really excited to be embarking on this program.
Bridge Builders Retreat
Again this year we are lucky to be able to nominate five students, who are female or identify as female, aged 13-15 years to attend the Bridge Builders Retreat, run by external community group, Bridge Builders. The camp provides a safe, nurturing and empowering experience for young women to connect, explore positive identity and feel supported. We will be hosting an information session later in Term 2 for interested students. If you or your daughter are interested in being nominated for the Retreat, please speak to your Year Level Team Leader for more information.
Please see information below for accessing wellbeing support and check out some local and online supports for families and young.
Peta Cartwright | Student Wellbeing Coordinator
Student Wellbeing Coordinator – Peta Cartwright/ Social Worker (3 days per week – Mon (Wk2), Tues Thurs, Fri)
School Chaplain – Gail Ackroyd/ Counsellor (2 days per week – Mon/Tues)
Mental Health Practitioner- Mariani Lim (2 days per week- Thurs/Fri (Wk1), Tues/Fri (Wk 2))
Counsellor -Kerrie Ayberk (1 day per week- Mon)
Counsellor- Eliza Wade (1 day per week- Thurs)
Counselling Intern – Sarah Ardiente (2 days per week – Tues, Fri)
Local and Online Services and Supports for Families and Young People
Accessing support through Wellbeing: Students
The Wellbeing Team can support students to navigate challenges that may be impacting on their ability to engage in learning or general feelings of wellbeing. This can include: transitions and adjusting to change, family or relationship difficulties, grief and loss, mental health concerns, drug and alcohol concerns, and many other challenges that young people encounter.
An initial appointment with a member of the wellbeing team will be an assessment of need with the student or family which will help to decide the best support option for the student. Support options available through the Wellbeing Team are:
- Individual short term counselling, psychoeducation and skills development
- group programs
- referrals to external support agencies.
- students may also be encouraged to access self-help strategies or resources.
Referrals to see someone from the team are made through year level leaders. Parents, students or teachers with concerns are encouraged to speak to their year level leader. Students or parents can also make an appointment directly with someone from the Wellbeing Team by attending the Wellbeing Centre, calling the school office or contacting us via email at email@example.com
Year level leaders who are made aware of concerns by a teacher will always endeavour to make contact with parents before referring a student to the Wellbeing team.
All counselling sessions with students are confidential and information is only shared if a student is deemed to be at risk of harm.
If you or anyone you know needs immediate support, please contact kidshelpline or lifeline on the numbers at the bottom of this page.
What’s on in Wellbeing?
The Wellbeing Centre is open at recess and lunchtime for students who need a quiet, safe place to regulate or access support. The centre is also used for lunchtime group programs which are advertised through compass or on notice boards.
Q-Squad, our LBGTQIA+ group runs every Thursday lunchtime.
More groups to come!
Accessing Support: Families
Most families, at some stage, need a little extra support to manage the normal challenges of life as well as the more difficult situations that arise. If you are experiencing hardship, stress or circumstances that are impacting on the wellbeing of your family life or your ability to cope, the Wellbeing Team can help to connect you with community services that can provide support. Please contact the Wellbeing Team via the school phone number or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
With the support of volunteers from local churches- Knox Baptist and Hillsong Church we are able to provide a breakfast club 5 days a week for our students, including a Pancake Breakfast every Thursday morning. All students are welcome.
Breakfast Club before school – Wednesday and Friday before School in A03
Breakfast Club Recess – Monday and Tuesday at Recess in A03
Breakfast Club Pancakes – Thursdays before school in A03
Tasty Truck Sandwiches – Everyday in the canteen courtyard at recess.
Food Support for families in need
Each fortnight on a Tuesday after school from 2:48pm – 3:08pm we have food support available for families who may be in need, for whatever reason. We have a selection of frozen meals and pantry items that families can collect from the former school canteen area without question or judgement. We know that access to food can be a real challenge for some families and we feel strongly about supporting the basic needs of our students and families. Watch out for compass posts each fortnight.
External Food Support Options