Welcome boot up for students

WorkWear has again given students at Cire Community School (CCS) a boot up in the form of OHS-compliant footwear.

Students need sturdy work boots as part of their personal protective equipment (PPE) to gain hands-on experience at external sites for Vocational Education and Training delivered to Secondary School Students (VETdSSS) and other skills-based electives. VETdSSS areas include Building and Construction, Automotive, Horticulture, Public Safety (firefighting operations), Electrotechnology, Wine Operations and Animal Care.

CCS student Mim Smith was delighted with her new protective footwear and happy to use nature’s catwalk (see photo) to put her best feet forward to model them.

‘These boots are so comfortable and so great to have for my Horticulture placements,” enthused Mim who commenced VCAL this year and is undertaking Animal Studies and Certificate II in Horticulture.

Mim said her placements would not be possible without the WorkWear boots because of OHS-compliant footwear requirements. They have helped boost her confidence to get hands-on experience and explore realistic employment opportunities in Animal Studies or Horticulture close to home in the Yarra Ranges.

“It is so good to be able to be hands-on after all the Covid restrictions and knowing that I am getting on with my life. I love working outdoors,” Mim beamed.

Karen Swankie, CCS’s VET Careers & Pathways Leader, said protective, safety footwear is essential for students gaining off-site experience.  Steel toe boots and shoes provide protection and help prevent and/or reduce the severity of injuries that may occur in the workplace.

“It is important to wear safe and comfortable boots as they are worn all day long and can protect students’ feet from damp and soggy workplaces.  Wearing supportive and well-made work boots prevent injuries and the potential of long-term podiatry issues,” Karen explained.

She said CCS was extremely appreciative of WorkWear’s support, including a previous generous donation of quality work boots.

Many of CCS’s young people experience vulnerability at many levels, including socio-economic disadvantage and other challenges. They and their families struggle to cover the cost of extras such as work boots.

“Many families are doing it tougher than ever with the rising cost of living, but the need for protective footwear mustn’t become a barrier for our students to continue their learning pathways towards brighter futures, particularly given the impact of the pandemic and disruptions to their education.”

Having the correct PPE makes students feel the part boosting their self-esteem, confidence and enthusiasm in their work.

Click here to learn more about our Community School.

Seen and Heard – Boy to Man

A new photographic series of our young men

The transition from boyhood to manhood is a beautiful as well as challenging one for any young man. Our boys of today are the men of tomorrow and it is important they are supported in managing this transition with respect, dignity and grace.

With the generous support of an RACV Foundation Grant, Cire Community School is partnering with local and international photographer Kate Baker on a new project to make portraits of a number of our young men at both Mt Evelyn and Yarra Junction school campuses. Using an old fashioned large format film camera, Kate is making meaningful and authentic portraits of our young men aged 15-19 and talking with them through that process to seek insights into their views of society.

Why is this important? Our world has changed substantially over the past 10-20 years. The internet and mobile telephone alone have radically changed the way we connect with others, both within our own society and across the world. We are always available and always accessible. We are in some ways far more visible, yet at the same time we might find we are more anonymous than ever.

These are our young men within the communities of Yarra Junction and Mt Evelyn and this project seeks to make sure they are both seen and heard. Our young men have value to bring into the community, some have had challenges which has actually meant they seek meaning more deeply. Over the course of the next few months we plan to share with you portraits of some of these young men and a little glimpse into their views of the world we all inhabit

It is clear that boys who have experienced challenges early in life, some of whom may have already experienced issues such as depression, homelessness, family breakdown, mental health issues, or substance abuse, can suffer as a result of isolation from the community.  This project aims to give students a voice and empower them to feel they can be productive members of the society.  The project aims to change the boys’ view of themselves as well as changing community perceptions of them.  We want to introduce our community to these young men and to encourage them to feel both “seen” and “heard”.

Like us on Facebook to be a part of this special project. Each week will feature an image or quote from the young men who attend Cire Community School.

Seen and Heard – Boy to Man Facebook page 

Cire would like to thank the RACV for funding this project and Kate Baker for her contribution and dedication.

If you would like to know more about Cire youth educational programs that cater for year 7 – 12 click here