School to Work Students Learn to have a Voice

Gold Coast Titans School to Work students recently attended the Cultural Centre at Dreamworld for a special Voice Against Violence presentation run by former Raider Alan Tongue.

The NRL School to Work program supports young indigenous Australians with work experience, mentoring and leadership opportunities to ensure they successfully complete school and transition into further study, training or meaningful employment.

Tongue was assisted by Titans School to Work officer Mel Lightburn and also current Titans centre Brian Kelly.

“Today we had the opportunity to share our voice against violence workshop with our school to work students,” Tongue said.

“It was a great opportunity to connect and share our message.

“These young men and women are leaders of the next generation and within their culture.

“Our message is that ‘the footy is in your hands’, and that they have an opportunity to steer their life in the right direction.”

Lightburn has been working within the southeast corner of Queensland for a number of years, and believes the connection between rugby league, schooling and employment helps the students.

“I wanted the students to walk away having had a positive experience where they’ve been able to learn about their culture,” she said.

“I wanted them to take away the message of the voice against violence program.

“They are in control and have the power to make change whether it be at home, at school or in their communities.”

Tamborine State High School student Grant Buxton said he really enjoyed the presentation from Tongue.

“It was a really good experience,” he said.

“Most of the stuff that Alan said was a real eye-opener, and a lot of the statistics I wasn’t aware about. It’s made all of us more aware.”