School fundraisers are just one of the many activities that have been put on hold to minimise the potential spread of COVID-19, but the girls at East Gosford’s St Joseph’s Catholic College have found a fun way to keep up with the social mission of their faith.
Each term the school’s Social Justice Group works towards a charitable project to enact the principles of Catholic social teaching and to emulate the life and work of Mary MacKillop, with this term’s project a fundraiser for Mary MacKillop Today.
The charity supports a range of initiatives with students from St Joeys opting to fundraise in support of the Mobile Kindy Project, a targeted program working to deliver early childhood education to Fijian children living in informal settlements.
But with classic fundraisers such as the tried and true bake sale effectively disbarred due to physical distancing requirements, the group has had to get creative with their fundraising and focus on smaller group activities.
These take the form of a new series of afterschool workshops where students can spend an hour and a half learning a new skill, getting creative and winding down after a long day.
The workshop series kicked off on August 10 with a ‘Pastel Pots’ pot plant decorating session that raised $150 for the cause.
“We came up with the idea of after school workshops because the only way we could proceed with fundraising was to do so in small groups and this model fit within the Covid regulations already in place at the school,” Youth Ministry Coordinator, Fiona Green explained.
“Pastel Pots had 15 students attend and we have more fun workshops coming, including Kokedama making (ornamental Japanese plant), hair braiding, scrunchie making and a few others.”
The funds are raised through each workshops entry fee which range from around $10-15 based on materials used in each individual session and $10 from each workshop participant goes to Mary MacKillop Today.
“Interest in the workshops is gradually growing and after Pastel Pots we’ve found the workshops also tick the wellbeing box for students.
“It’s a stressful time to be in high school so getting to give the girls a creative and relaxing outlet while still raising funds for kids in Fiji is a win-win for us.
“They’re also just a fun and uplifting way for our students to spend an afternoon,” Green said.