St Matthew's Students learn mateship and the harm of bullying

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St Matthew’s students were entertained by the travelling troupe from Brainstorm Productions while being reminded of the importance of looking out for their mates, being resilient, and the ever-important message ‘Everyone has the right to be happy’.

The visitors presented to the students as a part of the St Matthew’s Wellbeing and Resilience program (K-12) and in preparation for RU OK Day on September 12.

Primary students were challenged to think about the impact of bullying, and the importance of being a good friend.

Secondary students were entertained with an honest and humorous reflection on the challenges of adolescence in today’s society, including the pressures of social media, bullying and body image as the focus.

“I learnt how to avoid being bullied; staying strong and ignoring the people who are being mean to you.”

General Co-ordinator for Secondary, Justin McCarney said, “Because the message was delivered in a humorous and realistic way by other young people, the students really engaging in the serious message of looking out for each other.”  

“The enormous and lasting impact bullying can have, and the need to be resilient,” he said.

“Also the awareness that we all have a right to be happy and safe.”

Brainstorm presenters Mia Donatelli and Alex Packard have been travelling the country visiting schools over the past year and said they were delighted with the way St Matt’s students engaged with their performances and discussions.

“Hopefully the students will relate to our characters in the presentations,” Mia said.

“We find mostly, students can see a little bit of our characters in all of us, whether it’s the mean girl, disengaged teenage boy, or the student being bullied and tormented.

“We have been enjoying positive feedback from the schools we visit, and hopefully together with schools we can get the message heard, that everyone deserves to be happy, and there is help out there, so talk up.”

Year 4 student Amelia Browning said she enjoyed the performance and took away  a lesson about the importance of being resilient.

“I liked how [characters] Charlie and Lucy were strong and didn’t let the bullies get them down,” she said.

“I learnt how to avoid being bullied; staying strong and ignoring the people who are being mean to you.”

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