18-Sep-2017

Lasalle Technical College, Papua New Guinea

Over many years, the St James College Walkathon has raised around $300,000 for Lasalle Technical College (LTC) in Hohola, Papua New Guinea. In recent years, this money has been used to fund the improvement and maintenance of various learning and sporting facilities, as well as purchase a vehicle to provide school transport for students who would otherwise walk long distances.

This year, a small amount of money that was raised contributed to St James College sending two staff members (Mr Patrick Janes, Mr Francis Cormick) to Lasalle Technical College (LTC) in Hohola, Papua New Guinea to teach classes, provide professional development for the staff, and importantly, further develop the already established relationship between our schools.

We left Melbourne very early on the morning of Tuesday 22 August, and arrived in Port Moresby (via Brisbane) at around 3pm that afternoon. Br Rick Gaffney (Head of Lasallian Works for PNG) drove us from the airport to Hohola (a suburb of Port Moresby) where we met some of the brothers living at the college, including Br Antony Swamy, the principal at LTC. Br Antony introduced us to a number of staff members and showed us through the college.

For the next three days, Patrick and I planned and taught a number of classes in our learning areas (Mathematics and English) to Year 9 and 10 students of LTC. Br Antony arranged a busy schedule for us so that we could have contact with each of the classes in these year levels. Class numbers ranged from 35 to 40 students, and student ages ranged from 15 to 25 years.

After school on our second day at Hohola, we presented a professional learning seminar to the staff of LTC, on the 'Lasallian 12 Virtues of a Good Teacher', and how these can be used in the context of a modern classroom. This was well received by the staff, and appreciated by Br Antony.

The staff, students and other members of the Hohola community were incredibly kind and welcoming, and were very grateful for the work that we did during our time in Hohola. They are also very grateful for the money that St James College has provided over many years. Although it was not the purpose of our journey, Patrick and I had an incredibly positive experience in Hohola, and this reassured us that the work that we at St James College do is important, and valued.

It is our intention to continue to strengthen our relationship with LTC in future years through our Walkathon and our staff visits to LTC. As a Lasallian College, it is important for us to continue to put our ‘Unity in Christ’ into action, by working with the staff of LTC to provide better educational opportunities for the students of Hohola.

Francis Cormick
Walkathon Coordinator

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