The IB inspires community service at The Kilmore International School
Students who undertake the rigorous academic International Baccalaureate diploma at The Kilmore International School are becoming increasingly community minded through the school’s community service program. At least 50 hours of community service must be undertaken as part of the IB program’s CAS program, which encourages students to learn and grow through Creativity, Action and Service activities.
The CAS program is a required part of every IB students study, meaning students at TKIS must complete at least 50 hours of each creativity, action and service activities during years 11 and 12. This year students are becoming active volunteers in charities and local community programs.
Coordinator of the CAS program, Daniel Khoo, believes that community service is the essence of the CAS program, as it gives students the opportunity to become involved in their community. “Students develop a real commitment through community service,” he said. “For example, when our students volunteer at Caladenia Nursing Home or Dianella Village Hostel they’re almost guaranteed to make a few new friends. They are old but they are wise. They can probably teach you a thing or two about life. Students cannot buy this kind of experience and they cannot learn this through their IB books.”
Other students have brightened the airwaves by becoming radio presenters on local community radio station OKR FM – which broadcasts around the towns of Kilmore and Wallan. In past years, Kilmore International student radio presenters have even won the OKR FM Young Presenters Quest for the best new young radio hosts under 25.
Mr Khoo said his students show “impressive professionalism and youthful zest” through their volunteering and fundraising for charities such as the Salvation Army’s Red Shield Appeal and the Royal Children Hospital’s Good Friday Appeal.
TKIS students also work to protect the natural environment by taking part in Clean Up Australia Day and planting seedlings on Planet Ark’s National Tree Day.
Community service helps students becoming caring, principled, thinkers – three of the qualities of an IB learner. Throughout the school year, students organise fundraisers and bake sales to raise much needed funds for local charities as well as charities within Australia and overseas.
Mr Khoo believes these activities show students the ability to make real change in the world. “These activities make students consider the ethical implications of their actions…it’s going towards a worthy cause and making real change,” he said.
Students also support the Cambodian Kids Foundation, a registered not for profit organisation that works from the grassroots to empower the Khmer people of Cambodia. This relationship between CKF and The Kilmore International School has seen students travel to Cambodia and help establish the Soksan International School.
Fundraising events like Ice Cream Fridays enable students to raise much needed funds to enable the Cambodian Kids Foundation to continue its important work. Creative activities allow students to learn new skills such as performing in the school production, taking an exotic Malaysian cooking class, getting green thumbs in the school CAS garden or learning Bollywood dancing.
Students also get active playing different sports and learning to achieve personal goals and work within a team environment. TKIS offers a number of sport based activities to students like the popular King of Basketball competition, golf, badminton, yoga, table tennis, swimming, gym, and the adventurous rogaining similar to orienteering.
The CAS program offers students a unique opportunity to meet new people, be active and becoming involved in causes students become passionate about. This program is only available at schools offering the IB Diploma. The Kilmore International School is the only school in Victoria to exclusively offer the IB Diploma to students.