Service Learning is a program whereby Year 11 students participate in organised service with marginalised groups or individuals in our community. The Year 11 students involved are tasked to work closely with the elderly in nursing homes, assist people living with disabilities, provide care and compassion to refugees and new arrivals, nurture the disadvantaged and homeless, and prepare meals for Meals on Wheels as well as other organisations and marginalised people. Community service provides opportunities for young people to develop the values, skills and understandings needed to contribute to civic wellbeing. It is intrinsically connected to our Catholic Dominican values.
The Service Learning program grew out of the numerous Social Justice initiatives that have been introduced to St Mary’s College. The placement invites students to make the transition from the perspective of charity to that of justice. The Service Learning program culminates in Term 3 with students “giving something of themselves” back to the community, whether that be their friendship, companionship, emotional and social support, respect, care, compassion, practical assistance or often just their presence to those who need it.
Service Learning is broken into two components in which all Year 11 students will complete a minimum of 30 hours of community service during Terms 1, 2 and 3.
- School-based/initiated activities where the College will organise and invite students to participate in service-based activities undertaken at school such as soup/muffin making for Moore St Centre.
- Community based/initiated activities where students organise (with school assistance) service outside the school/outside of school hours.
Year 11 students return from their Service Learning placement willing to share their experiences, challenges and stories with family, friends and one another. This reflective process is significant and important in fostering our student’s inherent goodness and their relationship with the community at large.