Anglicare NSW South NSW West and ACT will launch a new youth wellness program for Year 7 to Year 12 students in the Batlow region in school term 3. The program, called Starting FRESH, promotes physical and emotional wellness through gym and exercise training, along with life skills and wellbeing sessions.
Anglicare’s Bushfire Recovery Coordinator in the Snowy Valleys, Joanne Murrell, is excited about what a program like this means for young people in the region.
“We decided to introduce this program because Anglicare’s Bushfire Recovery team were originally looking for ways to support young people who had been affected by the Black Summer bushfires. Anglicare was already running the Starting FRESH program in Wagga Wagga, so we were able to adapt this for young people in our region,” says Joanne. “Exercising both mind and body in a group setting is a great way to improve overall health, and can also enhance relationships and social engagement.”
The program will operate three afternoons a week from the Batlow Technology School gym facility, and will include an afternoon tea/dinner.
“We are currently looking for staff members to join our team. These roles are a practical way to support the local community and invest meaningfully in the lives of young people,” says Joanne.
Damion Fraser is the program facilitator of the Starting FRESH program in Wagga Wagga, and says the initiative has already seen incredible success over the three years that it has been running.
“Around 300 students from six schools in Wagga have participated in the Starting FRESH program since it began, and we have a waiting list of students wanting to participate,” says Damion. “What we’ve seen is increased levels of schools engagement, and young people continuing in education and employment. The feedback from the young people themselves shows that this program is extremely beneficial and well received.”
For more information about Anglicare’s youth and family services and bushfire recovery services, CLICK HERE.