Squeals of delight rang through the grounds of Diocesan School For Girls in Auckland last month – as 24 children in care were gifted bikes by students taking part in a leadership programme.
The annual event is a highlight of the calendar for staff at the school and staff at Fostering Kids NZ – because of the ways it enriches the lives of everyone involved.
“We understand money is tight for many of our caregivers – so this programme provides children with an opportunity they may not otherwise get. It is wonderful to see the surprise and delight on the faces of the children when they realise that the bikes are theirs.”
Diocesan Principal Heather McRae says the programme gives her students the opportunity to think about how they can make a difference in the community throughout their lives:
“As part of this programme we want the girls to have experiences to learn what it is like to be in other people’s shoes and to think about the needs of others, because in the end those are the most valuable and authentic leadership skills you can have. Leadership isn’t a role – it is about what you can do for other people.”
“This is one of the more successful parts of our leadership programme. You can tell kids to do things, but it is what they feel that makes a difference. That is the difference that parents notice with a programme like this.”
Programme leader Chris Clay says he wants his students to make connections between innovation and service.
“From our perspective this is all about how do we learn to create a better future. If we think about the future we want, what actions can we take right now to make that a more likely occurrence.”
Diocesan School For Girls is not the only organisation which takes part in the bike-building programme. Fostering Kids NZ also has a relationship with Elevate, who run ‘Build my Ride’ events throughout New Zealand. If you are a member of Fostering Kids NZ and have a child in your care that needs a new bike, please complete the a registration form to go on the wait list – Registration Form.
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