Shooting Stars Update

  • 3 mins

The 2022 HenderCare Foundation Remote Communities Grant recipient, Shooting Stars, continues empowering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander girls and women. The staff, 85% of whom are Aboriginal women, walk alongside Shooting Stars students throughout their schooling journeys.

The Shooting Stars sites are based within host schools, offering advocacy and support, engagement activities, and opportunities to build confidence, leadership skills, and connection to culture and identity. The sites each provide a Shooting Stars room, where weekly health & well-being sessions are held, and participants can spend time during recess and lunch.

Above all else, the positive, child-led relationships with staff, peers and community are central to the program.

“Shooting Stars is like a second family to me. They help me with lots of stuff, like if I have any problems or if I even have good news to say, they’ll listen and they’ll, you know, celebrate or help me out. It’s like a safe place for me,” says a Year 10 Shooting Stars participant from Whyalla.

“…even just at break times like, you know, like hanging out with the staff and just like with all your friends and all the Shooting Stars people – that’s the most important part to me.

Another Year 10 participant from Whyalla adds:

“They help a lot with basically anything. Education, problems at home… I guess yeah, good or bad things – always there to help.”

“I guess just being in Shooting Stars … that’s probably the best part about it. Like even when we’re not doing anything, it just makes you feel good … and being with people like you.”

Last term, 13 Shooting Stars participants from years 8-10 at Whyalla Secondary College were selected to attend “The Adelaide Leadership Camp”. It involved a number of opportunities for the girls to foster and develop their leadership skills, step outside their comfort zones and think about future career options.

They engaged with professionals from different workplaces and participated in a netball clinic with the Adelaide Thunderbirds athletes before watching them play in their SSN First Nations Round home game. As participants and staff reflected on the four-day camp, a standout highlight across the board was having the opportunity to spend time connecting with one another.

This term, the girls at Whyalla will participate in Shooting Stars’ Deadly Minds Matter program. Deadly in Aboriginal English means ‘awesome,’ and the program provides opportunities for participants to develop positive social and emotional well-being skills and preventative mental health strategies that can be used to respond and adapt to life’s challenges or everyday stresses.

The Deadly Minds Matter program will go for the length of the school term and culminate in a community netball event, celebrating what the girls have learnt and providing opportunities to engage with local health service providers.

Click here to learn more about Shooting Stars or the Deadly Minds Matter Program.

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