GLENORCHY children and their families gathered recently to celebrate the first term of an innovative new project that provides a range of after-school activities for children across grades one to six.
Called the Glenorchy Children’s Social Development project, activities provided for in the first term included ball sports with the Glenorchy District Football Club (GFDC) and a singing/drama class with local business ExitLeft Performance Academy.
Project drivers Alison Stone and Sonya Enkelmann have been volunteering their time to get the project off the ground.
Ms Stone said the project was about children trying new things and enjoying themselves, although it remained grounded in research on social development.
“There is so much we can do with this project, but as it involves the whole community, it must be firmly embedded in the community,” she said.
“We are currently looking for funds for a part-time coordinator and if we are successful then we’ll be able to reach more of the community and strengthen the connections that have already started to form.”
GFDC president John McCann was one of the first on-board with the project and said the club was keen to offer its support, as it was developing a strong outreach program to improve the wellbeing of the community.
“The after-school program shows how the community can work together to provide a much needed range of services and it has been great to see the kids having fun,” he said.
This was a sentiment also shared by Ian Williams from ExitLeft who said it was “such a rewarding process.”
“It was rewarding, not just for the children, but for me and performance tutor Malory Butter,” he said.
“The children have flourished and really had a terrific experience and we’re thrilled to offer the program next term.”
Ms Stone and Ms Enkelmann will soon be canvassing the community for sponsorship to help fund a new range of paid activities, as well as transport to places such as the Moonah Arts Centre.
“We have been so fortunate in attracting the goodwill and donations for our activities to date, but we will need to have a mix of volunteer and paid activities,” Ms Enkelmann said.
“By doing so, we can provide an interesting mix for our children – they’re at the centre of this work and we want to provide them with as many experiences as we can.”
Ms Stone said they also hoped to include community volunteers in the future.
“We will be talking with our children about what they’d like to do, but we would dearly love some volunteers who can teach music, craft and woodwork, drumming and yoga – anything that the children might like to try,” she said.
If you are interested in becoming involved in the project by volunteering or donating, please contact Sonya Enkelmann on 0466 253 321 or firstname.lastname@example.org.