Page 4125 - Week 11 - Wednesday, 16 Sept 2009

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Chisholm school has been on enhancing wellbeing at the school. The wellness week is the culmination of the term-long program that has seen concepts of wellbeing incorporated into the curriculum there.

The school are already seeing great results from the project, and they were recently successful in being awarded a health promoting schools grant and a values education grant to support the great work that they are doing there. When I was there, the students and the teachers were talking to me around the five ways to wellbeing framework. The five elements are connecting with others, staying active, taking note of the small things, lifelong learning, and giving. Each of us finds our own way to wellbeing. Introducing these five principles to our young folk is an excellent way to make sure they have positive frameworks and positive messages which they can fall back on as they go through their growing experience over the next few years.

The wellness week is about having practical workshops at the school. There are activities such as tai chi, cycling and chess. They are even building possum boxes for the community. They will visit art galleries and walk through the wonderful area of Tidbinbilla. The focus on the physical and mental wellbeing of our children, particularly the students of Caroline Chisholm, is a great way for them to get the most out of life. Again, I take the opportunity to congratulate the principal there, Wendy Wurfel, the teachers and executive and the students and the parents of the Caroline Chisholm school for getting the grants and thinking positively. I wish them well for their wellness week.

East Timor fundraising events

MS HUNTER (Ginninderra—Parliamentary Convenor, ACT Greens) (6.47): I would like to bring the Assembly’s attention to an important fundraiser which will be held next Friday, 25 September 2009. It is the combined annual fundraiser of the Canberra Friends of Dili and the Ryder-Cheshire Foundation for aid projects in East Timor. This year the theme of the evening is the importance of dance to Indigenous cultures, with the guest speaker for the evening being the CEO of the Australian Ballet, Mr David McAllister.

The Canberra Friends of Dili and the Ryder-Cheshire Foundation are critical and significant organisations within the Canberra community. The Canberra Friends of Dili encourages mutual education and cultural and business connections between the capitals of Australia and Timor Leste while promoting the Canberra-Dili friendship city relationship. The Canberra Friends of Dili was formed in 2002 and is a voluntary organisation with no paid staff. The aim of this organisation is to promote awareness of the rich and varied culture of Timor Leste while assisting in the continued development of the newly independent nation.

Among the work that is undertaken by the organisation is the establishment of the Friendship School Project Council. Through this initiative, five ACT schools provide opportunities and resources for students to learn with their counterpart schools in Dili. The friendship school council, which is the unincorporated body formed for this project, also provides practical and administrative support to schools in the program.

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