On Thursday, a group of Year 9 and Year 6 students (from both the Dee Why and Bayview Campuses) travelled to Dubbo to visit Macquarie Anglican Grammar School to present a cheque for $10,685.46 to the farming families of the School. The cheque represented funds raised by the St Luke's Community to help the farming communities struggling with the consequences of this prolonged drought.
Following is a speech delivered by Year 9 student, Olivia – who addressed the students from Macquarie Anglican Grammar School, prior to the presentation of the cheque.
My name is Olivia, and I live on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. Most of the week I am there, but my family have a farm which we go to almost every weekend.
I’ve seen first-hand, the effects of the drought and the devastation of my property, other properties and businesses in the town. Most of the students at my school though, probably have not.
So – what was behind my passion for organising this for a group of St Luke’s students to visit Macquarie Anglican Grammar School in Dubbo?
St Luke’s is very good at getting behind various issues by fundraising. We raised a lot of money for drought appeal, but I wanted to find a way for the students at my school to better understand the full effect of what was really going on in farming communities. We do a lot of fundraising for overseas countries, and I was wondering how we could also focus on what was happening closer to home. I felt the need for my friends and students to see first hand what it’s like to live through a drought like this one. I wanted people to understand what the farmers and town are going through at this time. Living on the Northern Beaches, we don’t necessarily see drought stricken places and those that haven't experienced living through a drought don’t really understand the dryness that comes with it.
So, thank you for welcoming us to your school. We are grateful to have had this opportunity, and we hope that the money that we have raised will help those in need during this time of drought.
While in Dubbo, as well as presenting the fundraising cheque to the students of Macquarie Anglican Grammar School, the St Luke's students also experienced staying in the boarding school, participating in an agriculture lesson, visiting the farms of local school families, planting wheat, and of course... they visited the Dubbo Zoo!