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MADALAH mentoring is back!

June 23, 2020

In 2019 MADALAH introduced a mentoring program which saw MADALAH Alumni and/or current tertiary students return to their secondary schools to mentor the 214 year 7-12 students who were on a scholarship with us. Mentoring is a proven approach to drive learning and personal development, with other benefits including increased engagement and support (both academically and personally). The mentoring program sees our mentors visit each of our 20 partner schools twice a term; delivering tailored sessions that explore themes such as Storytelling & Role Modelling, Mental Health & Well-being and Leadership for example.

It is so good to be getting back out into our partner schools to deliver our MADALAH Mentoring Program. Whilst we still facilitated these sessions online using various platforms throughout the COVID-19 period, it just wasn’t the same so we are thrilled to be back doing what we love!

We carry out our mentoring in 2-week blocks and so far this fortnight, we have met with Christ Church Grammar School, Iona Presentation College, Guildford Grammar, Aquinas College, Wesley College and Penrhos College.

At Christ Church the seniors were mid exams, at work placement, other students are easing back into the curriculum and sport’s nearly back into full swing, so they are all starting to find a sense of normality, so much so that it almost seems like things had never changed with the exemption of the precautions we are all still taking. They were as energetic and inquisitive as ever and it was great to see them back at school and enjoying themselves.

At Iona we discussed the impact the remote learning had on the girls and how they were settling back into school. The mentoring team of Casey, Jasmine and Georgia was tailor made for this group of girls and the Iona girls appreciated having strong female role models deliver the mentoring session.

On Thursday 16th of June we cooked kangaroo stew and Jonny cakes at Guildford. We hope this may ease the students home sickness by providing them a home away from home experience.

At Aquinas we did 2 separate sessions; one for the junior school students and one for the senior school students. We discussed life after COVID-19 in the boarding house, how they were tracking in school, what their plans were for the holidays and we got to see the drastic changes made to how they get their recess from the dining hall. The group explained to us their individual interests and aspirations, it was once again a pleasure to mentor such a respectful group of young men.

The Wesley boys were respectful and supportive as usual. They were honest about their experiences adjusting back to school life and how they were tracking with their work. As always they were open to our support and were receptive of our suggestions of how we can help and also gave as a few suggestions of their own on how we can best cater our sessions for them. We always enjoy heading out to Wesley to witness their camaraderie first hand!

The girls at Penrhos also gave their perspective on their experience during the COVID-19 break and on adjusting to back to school. They let us know they were catching up on their work and that they were happy for the mentor team to help whenever they need us to. They spoke about what their plans were for the holidays and their plan of attack to finish the second half of the year strong. It was great to see the happy faces of young girls at Penrhos!

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"I am incredibly grateful for all of the help and commitment MADALAH gave towards putting me through schooling away from home. I wouldn't have had these great opportunities to secure a future life after school without MADALAH! " Jordee Simmons

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