Standing up for Social Justice

St Mary's Primary School Maryborough
St Mary's students sent a message of hope and love to struggling farmers

SOCIAL Justice is something they do well at St Mary's Primary School, Maryborough.

Each term the school's Social Justice Group, which comprises of Year 6 Student Leaders, are responsible for fundraising for a different charity.

It included Caritas Australia, Sew PNG (a local charity run by parishioners), Catholic Missions and the St Vincent de Paul Society.

When the group heard about the farming families struggling with drought they set about doing something to help them.

Through Assistant Principal Religious Education Michelle White, the group contacted the national Catholic Missions office to find out if there was a way their fundraising efforts could be directed towards drought affected farmers.

After a few phone calls, Michelle arranged through Catholic Missions Diocesan Director David McGovern for any funds raised to go towards those living in the Wilcannia-Forbes diocese, in Western NSW.

Wilcannia-Forbes Bishop Columba Macbeth-Green was thrilled to hear the news as his diocese was very large, covering 52 per cent of NSW, all of which was drought stricken.

Michelle said the social justice group organised two fundraisers, a Father's Day raffle which raised more than $1400 and a 50c Challenge which raised $380 and still counting.

She said the school's parent community donated some fantastic prizes for the raffle including, a large esky, electric shaver, heaps of vouchers, tackle box and much more.

“Our students have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to help people in need that they can relate to," Michelle said.

“Parents in the community have been very supportive as they can see first-hand the devastating effects of the drought on the farmers."

Michelle said the aim of having the group within the school extended to more than just fundraising.

She said St Mary's encouraged students to embrace the principles of Social Justice in all aspects of their life while at school and beyond.

“They also raised awareness within the school community about those less fortunate," she said.​

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