Edition 20: November 2017

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Plenty to be proud about

There was plenty to be proud of across the Tamworth region as Opportunity Hub staff celebrated the end of Year 12 with local students. The commitment these students have shown to focus and excel throughout the pressure of the HSC has been amazing. Many have accessed the support provided by the Opportunity Hub and it has been humbling and exciting to watch the students' progress, as they reflect on their own strengths and weaknesses, develop study routines and strategies, and develop an understanding of their limits and when to reach out for extra support. A few of these students are forging new pathways, as the first of their family to complete the HSC. We wish all of them the very best and look forward to walking alongside them on the next part of their journeys.

In this edition:

  • Year 12 formals - photo gallery
  • Dream big Year 12s
  • Sam in the running for Queen crown
  • Tintinhull turns story to art
Year 12 Formals
Photo Gallery
Peel High School graduates: Maria Monica, Michelle Clare (AEO), Donna Creighton, Janaya Lamb, Bianca Berry, Amy Duncan and Kiata Knox
Dream big Year 12s!

Across Tamworth there were many memories, hopes and dreams shared as Year 12s graduated across all of our schools. We include here an excerpt of Georgia Taggart's graduation speech. As School Captain of Tamworth High School this year Georgia has shown great leadership and we thank her for her wise words:

"To the year 12 graduating today, one chapter of our lives has ended and it’s time to begin yet another one. We will never be ready for what is yet to come in our life however it is our duty to live life to its fullest. Take every chance and every opportunity to keep learning and discovering. Have doubt, fail and make mistakes because that what keeps faith and determination a living thing. Do what you think is right for yourself for nobody else is walking in your shoes.

"Dream big, Discover the world, work hard and surround yourself with good people and no matter what the situation never let your emotions overpower your intelligence.

"Don’t allow school to define you, nor anyone else, don’t let anyone break your soul, you have to stand on your two feet and be proud of yourself and what you have achieved. Don’t give the satisfaction to those who want to see you fail, hold your head up high, smile and stand your ground. When life, school or people put you in tough situations, don’t say “why me?”, tell them “try me”. Because you matter, your talents, uniqueness, skills and qualities matter. There’s only one of you so remember that.

"We all belong as one, stay safe and have fun, year 12 you are now dismissed."

Clockwise from top left: Camille Fernando (McCarthy) with Sam Duncan (Opportunity Hub); Sam Duncan (Opportunity Hub) with Brittany Pendergast (McCarthy); Brittni Wann and Lakeisha Hile (TLALC) with Amy Duncan (Peel), Sam Duncan (Opp Hub), Fiona Snape and Yvonne Kent (TLALC); Sam Duncan (Opportunity Hub) with Janaya Lamb (Peel), Amy Duncan (Peel), Kiata Knox (Peel) and Cass Withers (Hair and Makeup Artist).
Top: Hollie Taggart, Brittni Wann, Yvonne Kent, Fiona Snape and Lakeisha Hile from the TLALC with Georgia Taggart (Tamworth High)
Above: Brittni Wann, Yvonne Kent, Fiona Snape and Hollie Taggart from the TLALC with Paris Knox (Tamworth High)
Sam in the running for Queen crown

Samantha Duncan has been soaking up some new skills as a proud entrant of the 2018 Queen of Country Music Quest. Opportunity Hub worker Sam was nominated for the Quest, which is sponsored by the Zonta Club of Tamworth, by the Tamworth LALC.  Since starting the Queen's Development Program she has been provided with a range of leadership training, including an opportunity to participate in a Toastmasters course to improve her public speaking skills. Sam says that development course has been full-on, but the opportunity to represent the interests of Aboriginal young people and Aboriginal communty and cultural values has been rewarding so far. In addition to the Toastmasters course, she has also lined up some tailored media training with Michelle from NSWALC and will have the opportunity to be interviewed on local radio. Sam's message to local young people is "don't be shame." It is important for us to put ourselves out there to challenge any negative stereotypes out there, and to show people exactly what we can achieve. Sam said.

The most recent Zonta networking dinner for the Queen entrants was held at a local Thai restaurant with the entrants challenged to attend in Thai national dress. Sam was surprised and honoured to be named the Best Dressed at the end of the night and is pictured in her outfit below.
Tintinhull turns story to art

Opportunity Hub Worker Patrick Strong has been involved in an exciting project which has allowed Tintinhull Public School students to transform a traditional Kamilaroi story into a colourful mural at the school. The project has had a number of partners.  Len Waters visited Tintinhull to share the stories and practice some language with the students. Loretta Weatherall from the Gomeroi gayangaal Centre interpreted Len's story into design ideas, and along the way 10 students from the Oxley High Girls Academy have assisted Tintinhull's Year 5 and Year 6 students with the project. 

The artwork represents the dhinawan (emu) in the sky. The shape of the dhinawan is seen as a dark space in the night sky that lies under the Southern Cross and it was used as an important calendar by the Kamilaroi people. The different positions of the dhinawan as it travels across the night sky between April and August each year gives knowledge relating to seasonal changes and land management as well as social, spiritual and cultural knowledge. The mural represents how important mother earth is to Aboriginal people.

The Tamworth Opportunity Hub coordinates and matches training and career opportunities with Aboriginal students, providing incentives to finish school and transition into sustainable jobs. 

Tamworth Opportunity Hub can be contacted at:
Address: 123 Marius Street, TAMWORTH NSW 2340
Phone: (02) 6766 9028; Fax: (02) 6766 9036
Facebook: Opportunity Hub Tamworth or via the link below

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