Social Justice and Winter Sleepout
24th July 2017
Social justice, service and advocacy form an integral part of the Domremy College culture. Students are encouraged to immerse themselves in a range of opportunities where they can be of service to the wider community.
Well into the harsher winter months, students at the College have further stepped up their initiatives and commitment to community.
The College again held its Winter Sleepout on Friday 21 July 2017, focusing on the gravity of the situation for the homeless who find themselves without a roof over their heads. This year, Orange Sky Laundry, a free mobile laundry service for the homeless, addressed over 100 students and staff who braved the cold and bunked down for the night. Mr Hansford and Ms Touma are reminded daily of the goodness, empathy and willingness of their students to reach out, offer assistance and make a tangible difference in the lives of those less fortunate.
Last month, Bonnie Lyons, Social Justice Prefect, together with the Social Justice Committee at the College, launched the 2017 House of Welcome Winter Food Drive. The House of Welcome has a food bank from which their clients can purchase essential grocery items at a heavily discounted cost. Bonnie says “Each Colour House has been allocated specific items, like a wish list, so that everyone can make a contribution of varied but essential items, which many of us take for granted. These range anywhere from tinned chickpeas, to laundry detergent, to breakfast cereals. As a committee we thought that this is a small way to help those less fortunate and doing it tough. It enables the clients of the House of Welcome to choose what they wish to buy and to do so with dignity.”
Principal, Vivienne Awad, says, “We endeavour to prepare our students for an active life of commitment, in order that they will develop into young adults who manifest a particular concern for the poor and those in need. We have a very active Social Justice program at Domremy led by our Youth Ministry and Social Justice Co-ordinators, Ms Jessica Touma and Mr Chris Hansford, together with our Social Justice Prefect and student Social Justice Committee which meets regularly.”
The Committee has its own Google site and Instagram page to keep the College community up to date with all the initiatives within the school. The popular Vinnies Sandwich Making, often oversubscribed with volunteers, sees Year 8 – 12 students involved regularly on a Friday after school, busy making fresh, healthy sandwiches, with donated items, for the St Vincent de Paul’s night patrol feeding the homeless. The College has over 75 students who give up each Monday lunchtime to visit the elderly at the Parkview Nursing Home for Nursing Home Visits providing companionship, love and conversation to our elderly. The College hosted a weekend day for a group of disadvantaged children earlier in the year for Buddies Day.