R U OK?
Earlier in the year, Loreto Normanhurst sent a group of students to the Mental Health Youth Forum at Macquarie University. The forum was about raising awareness of and de-stigmatising mental health issues in young people. A seed was sown on this day for three Year 10 students who were part of the forum. Breahna Akerboom, Ava Nalywajko and Ella Sheridan wanted to raise awareness about the importance of having check–in conversations with friends and family on R U OK? Day. R U OK? is nationally recognised on September 12 each year in Australia and was founded by Gary Larkin OAM who had an interesting journey around his own mental health. You can read more about the organisation and Gary’s story by clicking here .
The students collaborated with the incoming Creative Arts Captain, Helena Liu, Year 11, to design an image that has been used to prompt discussions about the day. It is below for you to see and I am sure you will agree that it captures the essence of the day well.
On Thursday, Tutor Group Prayer and the Midday Gong focused students and staff to stop, pause and reflect on the importance of checking in with one another and to ask someone if they are in fact ‘ok’. The LRC team created a visual display and chill-out zone for students and staff to come, sit, chat and play a board game if they wished. After all, you don’t need to be an expert to reach out, just someone who takes the time to listen to another person.
Breahna, Ava and Ella’s reflections on the experience are below and we congratulate them for their active student voice, initiative and leadership in this area.
Today we celebrated R U OK? Day. We wanted to celebrate this day in order to recognise the importance of mental health and reaching out. We wanted to tell the school that there are so many support systems in place for them as well as to highlight your value as an individual within our school community.
I was inspired to organise R U OK? Day because it is an important issue to empower everyone to meaningfully connect with the people around them and start a conversation with anyone who may be struggling with life. By being chosen to go to the mental health forum earlier this year, I felt enthusiastic to run this day alongside Breahna and Ella as it hasn’t been strongly focused in our school before and we aim to inspire all the girls and teachers to start life changing conversations with one another.
R U OK? Day is an important day as it’s a day to take a moment and think about yourself and others and ask your friends and yourself R U OK? It’s important for people to know that it’s okay to not be okay and that it’s alright to speak up and ask for help if you need it.
SchoolTV is a digital resource for parents to assist in navigating your way through the challenges of modern-day parenting. Every month, Dr Michael Carr-Gregg introduces a new topic and interviews specialists to offer their advice. Information is presented in bite-size pieces that you can watch and read anywhere at any time on any device. Click the SchoolTV image to access the website. Please bookmark for easy access in the future.
Conversations this week:
|Year 12||In Conversation with Ms Ugonotti|
|Year 10||Tutor Conversations|
|Year 9||R U OK? and Connections Conversation with Mr Madigan|
|Year 8||Critical Thinking Skills Conversation with Advisors|
|Year 7||RAP revisit Conversation with Advisors|
Upcoming School Events
Year 12 Staff Breakfast Thank You – Monday 16 September
Year 11 Leadership Day – Monday 23 September
Year 11 Retreat – Tuesday 24 September to Thursday 26 September
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
Mr Justin Madigan
Dean of Pastoral Care