HOOPS FOR HARMONY LAUNCHES IN WOOLLOOMOOLOO
It was a special Harmony Day celebration at Plunkett Street Public School in Woolloomooloo last week with the launch of Charity Bounce’s Hoops for Harmony primary schools program. Hoops for Harmony teaches students key life lessons through an interactive basketball program engaging every student to participate in the program. Using the principles, skills and training learned on a basketball court the program focuses on teamwork, promoting inclusiveness and valuing diversity.
The program involved 35 students from Kindergarten to Year 6 from Plunkett Street Primary with more than 20 different cultural backgrounds represented to celebrate Harmony Day. With a feast of nations taking place first, the students then took to the court to try their hand at basketball with the Charity Bounce team. Charity Bounce would like to thank the Newington College senior student volunteers who took time off from their studies to support the Hoops for Harmony program. As players for the Charity Bounce team, the senior student volunteers introduced themselves and greeted the Plunkett Street students in 7 different languages. The primary school students who could speak these languages joined in on the conversation speaking Tongan, Russian, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Fijian, French and Indian.
One of the highlights on the day was a conversation in French between Brad, a Year 4 student from Cameroon and Lucas, one of Newington College’s Year 10 students, which could have continued for many hours as they were both able to use their French language skills. When Mandarin was spoken by Finn, a Year 10 student, one of the Plunkett Street students suggested they would all like to recite the numbers 1 to 10 in Mandarin and they did so with great gusto. Well done Plunkett Street Primary!
After the multi-lingual introductions the students learnt a few basketball skills and drills, warming up for the main event where the mighty Plunkett Street students challenged the Charity Bounce team. Every student managed to get some court time and the extra on court games proved popular, raising loud cheers from the group. Even some of the teachers tried their hand at half court shots, much to the excitement of the enthusiastic crowd.
The session closed on a high with lots of multi-lingual goodbyes and thank you’s (with a large number of high fives taking place as well). It would be safe to say Plunkett Street Primary School will see a few extra basketballs being bounced, passed and launched around the school court after the day by the fun loving and positive group of primary school students.
Inclusion, teamwork, respect and acceptance were the winning messages on the day. A big thanks to the Newington college senior student volunteers and Plunkett Street Primary School for taking part in our Hoops for Harmony program launch. We look forward to future opportunities to work together.
Hoops for Harmony is all about everyone having a go and working together as a team.
Charity Bounce is a not for profit organisation that exists to inspire positive change to overcome disadvantage for individuals and communities. With a focus on Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders and Culturally Diverse communities, including newly arrived refugees we aim to move people toward a more positive future through the development of sports, the arts, health, education and employment focused social programs. The programs are delivered in partnership with professional athletes to motivate change and inspire.