I am currently in Central Australia accompanying the Year 10 'Our World' trip to Alcoota.
This is my 7th trip to the Engawala Community to participate in the activities of the Alcoota school.
We set off by bus and traveled through the vast outback terrain to Yulara via Coober Pedy and Port Augusta. This gives the students an appreciation of the size and remoteness of this amazing part of our country.
Time spent on the bus along the highway allows time for the group to bond in readiness for when we arrive at the school.
When we arrived at Yulara we visit The Cultural Centre to learn about the significance of Uluru and the surrounding district to the Anunagu people and the cultural importance of this land.
After hearing about the law of Tjurkapa and developing greater awareness of the importance of Uluru, we set off on our walk around the base. I have been impressed with the willingness of the students to absorb the knowledge that has been shared with them.
The incredible layers of learning that this program provides our students never ceases to amaze me. The opportunity for students to 'rough it' in the outback, experience parts of Australia away from the tourist tracks, have the privilege of spending time in the Indigenous Community and developing rich relationships with their friends and teachers are endless.
I count this opportunity as a privilege myself to continue to be involved in the community and the Alcoota School as well as being able to see first hand the rich learning that our students experience as a result of such a valuable program.
Throughout the years I have seen incredible development of this program and developed wonderful relationships with the Engwala people, the staff and students of the Alcoota School, but particularly the Christian College students and staff that have accepted and included me so generously on their trips.
I am most grateful to Mr John Tatnell, who introduced this program to Christian College 13 years ago, Mrs Jan Strauch (class teacher) for sharing her trips with me, the past Christian College student leaders who accompany these trips, the bus drivers who provide much more support to this program then their driving expertise and of course the 'Our World' students for making these adventures to the heart of Australia such positive and impacting experiences.
This trip certainly has many layers of benefit beyond the surface, that truly changes and enriches lives for everyone involved.
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