LUURNPA CATHOLIC PRIMARY SCHOOL

BALGO, WESTERN AUSTRALIA

Living in a Lasallian Volunteer Community 

**This placement is open to males and females

About the Placement

Balgo Hills is a small community with a population of approx. 600.  It lies in the Kimberley region of Western Australia almost 260km from the nearest major town and south of Halls Creek.  It lies on the northern edge of the Great Sandy Desert and on the western edge of the Tanami Desert, an hour's drive from the NT border where climatic conditions are harsh with summer temperatures reaching 45 degrees celsius. 

Luurnpa Catholic School comprises of a K-8 school and a Trade Training Centre. Volunteers take part in community living, Christian mission and high impact work for the disadvantaged Wirrimanu Aboriginal Community. This remote placement offers exposure to Aboriginal culture and demanding volunteer work. In Balgo, there are a lack of work opportunities and recreational activities for adolescents and adults, which contribute to substance abuse, domestic violence and teenage pregnancy. This presents challenging behaviours and social issues at Balgo that are being addressed.

It requires Volunteers with emotional stability, great flexibility and resilience. A Lasallian Volunteer would need to build relationships with Aboriginal youth and families in the community. Challenges are relating to children who are multilingual, the remote locality (one shop with limited goods), cooking, finding one's own recreation. There is a clinic with a doctor, nurses and availability of the Flying Doctor Service.  

The role of a Lasallian Volunteer

As a Lasallian Volunteer you will have the opportunity to support the enthusiastic and vibrant students of the school in a variety of ways. Volunteers have the chance to get immersed in many aspects of school life as well as in the local community and culture.

Responsibilities of an LV role includes:

  • Support individual students and assist in classes with literacy and numeracy.
  • Promote sports participation: football, basketball, rounders etc. before and after school, at recess and lunch.
  • Coordinate the Mangarri (food) program at school; breakfast club, nutritious lunches for students.
  • Work in various activities -music, breakfast program, art, dance, photography, cooking.
  • Assist at the Trade Training Centre in literacy, numeracy, Hospitality and Carpentry classes.
  • Support the youth minister with various activities.
  • Work with youth in the community in recreation after-school sport, school disco etc.
  • Assist with pool supervision and maintenance.
  • Help in keeping grounds attractive: mowing, maintaining the vegetable garden, rubbish removal, irrigating, tree-planting, cleaning, refueling.
  • General cleaning of vehicles.
  • Contribute to the parish life of the community, including writing and distributing the "Mirli Mirli" newsletter.
  • Attending staff meetings.

Challenge: living in a remote location, low speed internet, being a long way from family and friends, learning to live with others you have never met before, managing the difficult behaviour of some students.

Reward: Supporting students with challenging lives, learning about Aboriginal culture, including; dreaming stories, bush tucker, hunting, going "out on country".  Experiencing cultural activities and celebrations, developing relationships with students, beautiful scenery, experiencing a part of Australia not many people get to see.

Preferred qualifications: Bronze Medallion swimming certificate, First Aid certificate, driver license, solid literacy and numeracy skills, experience working with children

To submit your interest apply here: Lasallian Volunteers Applications 2019

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