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Noble Park thrill CALD kids
Noble Park brigade delighted, engaged and educated hundreds of local primary school children from ethnic backgrounds on Wednesday 13 November.
In a first for the brigade, the Noble Park English Language School (NPELS) invited CFA through the Volunteer Support Program to engage with the entire primary school and deliver fire education messages, raise the profile of the CFA and tap into the next generation of firefighters. By way of background, the NPELS provides an excellent start to Australian education for newly arrived and international students from non-English speaking backgrounds. It aims to teach students the English they will need for education and life in Australia.
Brendon Hobden (2nd Lieutenant) delivered 6 interactive and engaging presentations to a range of children, with up to 4 translators in the room at one time which made for a cacophony of sound and delayed jokes! The presentation covered basic fire safety, triple zero and the role of CFA and firefighters. Terence Sanford (1st Lieutenant) would then enter the room in full turnout gear with breathing apparatus to demonstrate to the children that while it may look intimidating, the turnout gear was non-confronting. William Chau also assisted throughout the day working with the teachers and students and showing the children around the truck.
Terence Sanford said "community engagement is an important focus for the CFA, and for members of Noble Park having an opportunity to interact with these multicultural students provided an invaluable forum to promote our Fire Safe Messages. We're really looking forward to continuing to work with the school into the future."
MFB's Multicultural Liaison Officers attended in support of CFA and have agreed to continue to support CFA by looking at dual badging of multicultural resources to increase efficiency across emergency services.
The NPELS Welfare Coordinator stated that the day was a huge success and the template for further engagement between Noble Park brigade and the school, including tapping into the parents. NPELS agreed to publicise all Noble Park brigade events, and even potentially fundraise on behalf of the brigade. Another session in Term 2, 2014 is currently being organised.
Congratulations to all those involved, especially the Noble Park volunteers, District 8 staff Shane Keen, Jane Barber, the MFB and the Noble Park English Language School.