For three years in a row De La Salle College students have raised more than $100,000 for charity through its annual Mission Action Day. The college emphasises respect for others and concern for the poor but it doesn’t just talk about it – it does something about it!
Mission Action Day (MAD) is a 12km walk-a-thon held on the last day of Term 1 each year. Students are sponsored for their walk, collecting pledges from friends, family and local businesses. Each student is encouraged to raise at least $50, with teachers and college captains supporting students in their fundraising initiatives.
Money raised helps underprivileged communities around the world, including in remote Australia, Papua New Guinea, India and the Philippines. “Mission Action Day money funds materials for works on a range of building and renovation projects which would otherwise be beyond the resources of the local community,” says principal Mr Peter Houlihan.
Students have the opportunity to be immersed in these communities, using the funds raised to purchase building materials and working as labourers to improve educational and housing facilities for those who need it most.
A group of Year 10 students visit Manila, Philippines, where they donate goods purchased with the MAD funds to local communities in need. They also work with Answering the Cry of the Poor to construct housing. Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) students utilise the MAD money to complete comprehensive construction works for a remote Indigenous community in Western Australia as well as a De La Salle school for impoverished children in Papua New Guinea. In Year 12, students are offered the opportunity to travel to India to work as labourers for poor Lasallian communities instead of attending the traditional ‘schoolies’ trip. Students and staff must cover their own travel costs and work with locals for four weeks to complete projects such as building new classrooms, improving bathroom facilities or renovating schools.
Not only do these trips contribute significantly to the local communities we visit, but the students find them to be life-changing experiences and they put into practice key leadership skills including problem-solving, decision making and critical thinking.
Money is also donated to other local charitable organisations including Sacred Heart Mission and the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, with 100 per cent of all funds raised through MAD going to charitable causes. De La Salle College does not make any profit from Mission Action Day.
|Years||Year 7 - Year 12|
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|Address||24 Bland Street, Ashfield 2131|