Our Stories




Science Kids

Science Kids has been fantastic this term. Both Bathgate Park and St Bernadette’s primary schools have had really good attendance, and the involvement from the schools has been really positive and encouraging for the kids. The final session’s feedback was really good, with family members eager to join in on the experiments and younger siblings excited to see what their brothers and sisters had been getting up to.

I think the highlight for the term for the kids was visiting the Life before dinosaurs exhibit at the museum, the kids were thrilled that they were able to visit, and it tied in with the work that they had done on fossils in the previous weeks. The teacher from St Bernadette’s was also thoroughly impressed, as we were able to attend the exhibit and watch a planetarium show on flying dinosaurs after.

In the last week Steph has bumped into one of the kids involved in the programme who came running up to her outside the hub. This particular child has had a bit of a rough time as of late, with her mother in prison. Although she was disappointed that Science Kids had come to an end, she told me how much she enjoyed it, and that she hoped to be able to participate again. It is really cool to learn how much of a positive influence that the programme can have.


Intensive Literacy & Numeracy (Prison)

It has been an interesting time getting to know, and work with, the students who are already established in their learning through the Foundation Skills at the Otago Correctional Facility, their attitude has been welcoming and they are appreciative of the fact they are there to learn and want to get on. One new student joined the Step Up class, his confidence was low as he had given up on school by the age of 13 and had problems concentrating for longer periods of time, but he wanted to do his best. Although only 22, he is a father to 3 children and wants to do something for them to be proud of. He decided numbers were his strongest area of learning so he began working with problem solving using number, he surprised himself how much he actually knew and how easily he could pick up new strategies. When the lesson time came to a close he was sad to go, he had enjoyed himself, something he had never thought to really happen in a classroom environment. As he left the programme’s building one of the guards commented he had never seen this student look that happy, that “he was lit up like a light bulb”.


Foundation Skills (Prison)

A student was on the audio-visual link to his partner and when she told him she was working on her CV, the student then said, “I’ve just got my unit standard in CV writing so I can help you”. He then advised her on fonts and number of pages and has asked her to send him a copy in so he can work on it for her. He also said that he wouldn’t have been able to do the interview unit without the training we did in class. And after the issues he had, he was ready to give up on studying in prison but now feels very keen to continue after doing the interview CV.


Client Support Worker

An elderly lady self-referred to the client support service needing help to go over her Meals on Wheels bill as she felt she was being overcharged. A home visit was organised and together we went over bill. We then rang the Meals on Wheels provider to compare their dates with what the client had. Unfortunately at the time of ringing the provider there was no answer so a message was left for them to contact the client support in regards to the bill. The client was happy for the client support worker to discuss her bill with the Meals on Wheels provider. A follow up appointment was arranged with the client to ensure her need had been met – in the meantime the Meals on Wheels provider did ring the client support worker back and it worked out that the bill was correct. At the follow up appointment the client support worker went through the bill and calendar days with the client to show how the Meals on Wheels provider had charged the correct days. The client was happy with the findings and duly wrote a cheque for the amount owing. She was very thankful to have had the help to clarify her bill as it was causing her some stress.

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