Hi my name is jane Leroi, I’m coordinating the Space2b school program called “Across Barriers ” a collaboration between Space2b Social Design and three local schools. The program involves school kids developing a welcome program for new migrants into our school communities. This program has been funded by the city of City Of Port Phillip
Our three schools are Christian Brothers College, St Kilda, CBC & Presentation College, Windsor, PCW and St Kilda Primary School, SKPS. In the picture above is Genevieve and Vicly, who are working with me on the St. Kilda Primary program and who both have kids at the school.
Ours first event was at PCW with Abe Nouk, from Creative Rebellion Youth being our guest speaker. Through the voice of poetry Abe mesmerised the kids who were very impressed and inspired to know more about refugees and and how to live the dream with building upon oneself confidence and how to use self motivation to create a future path.
Here is one of the amazing poems from Abe Nouk To be a poet
Followwing up on Abe;s visit, Id like to share some feedback from one of the girls and parents from PCW post event
Here is the piece that Mathilda Pithouse (a Year 12 student) wrote for The Lantern (school newsletter)
“Sudanese-born Abe Nouk landed on Australian soil in 2004 as a refugee, unable to read and write in his own native tongue, let alone the completely new one he was suddenly submerged in. Fast forward 12 years and he is standing in front of a room full of wide-eyed high-schoolers, sharing his story through spoken poetry. I’m sure I can speak for everyone in the audience when I say I wasn’t too sure what to expect from the slam poetry, and I’m also positive I speak for everyone when I say that I left that room speechless.
His profound poems delved deep into his war-torn childhood, the stigma of living as a refugee and the frustration he fought and perseverance he found through his illiteracy. He forced us to ponder our privilege – not to induce guilt, but rather appreciation, and emphasised our own role in creating our futures. Most importantly, he emphasised the importance of our self-forgiveness and acceptance, using his extraordinary life as an example.
I’d like to thank this incredible role model for taking his time out to speak to us. We are inspired and most of all, grateful. I hope many more people are lucky enough to hear these amazing stories from such an amazing person.”
Clearly, she was blown away! The school also received the following email from a parent of a Year 12 girl just last night about Abe’s visit:
” the reason why I wanted to contact you is to say that Leah was very impressed, moved and encouraged by the recent visit of the young rapper/ slam poetry artist from Africa. Leah is very receptive to people who come from different cultural/social backgrounds and who succeed against all the odds. She was in tears telling me about the young man.
Thank you for organizing this event.”
All three schools are embracing the “Across Barriers” program in some format which will be embedded into their school curriculum for 2017.
We look forward to working with such great people and children in the near future, for “together we do make a difference.”