When I was in Year 11, I toyed with the idea of introducing The Smith Family – an Australian Independent non-profit to my QASMT schoolmates. The Smith Family is a children’s charity whose goal is to create opportunities and help disadvantaged children to achieve their best. I decided that introducing the Student2Student program to QASMT would be a great way to spread my passion to help the less fortunate. I first broached this idea with Dr White who was equally enthusiastic and encouraging. After contacting the organisation, Ms Smith and I then reached out to the QASMT community for volunteers to participate in this fulfilling program. Currently, Ms Pfingst is overseeing the program.
The Student2Student reading program supports children who have difficulty reading, to be paired with a QASMT student. The QASMT student receives a package containing a number of story books and a phone from The Smith Family. The student commits 2-3 days a week to help the designated student with reading over the phone. Statistics from The Smith Family not only show that children have been able to improve their reading skills, but also improve their confidence and self-esteem through this program.
Currently, there are more than 20 QASMT students who are volunteering in this program. Last term, these students were trained by staff from The Smith Family during school. The successful launch of the Student2Student program at QASMT is inspiring and motivating. I hope more students across Years 10 to 12 will participate and continue to support this program in the following years.
At this juncture, I would like to take this opportunity to extend my appreciation to Dr White and Ms Smith for supporting my idea and implementing the program at QASMT. Furthermore, I would like to extend my appreciation to Ms Pfingst for her current and future involvement in this program.
Gayathri Nair, Student