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One of the most endearing and enduring qualities of the St Leonard’s College community is the sense of responsibility for those less fortunate. Our young people are encouraged through a myriad of opportunities to make valuable and meaningful contributions to society.
Recognition of the importance of kindness in today’s world is actively demonstrated and ingrained in the behaviour of our students. They understand that generosity not only manifests in financial giving, but also in the giving of time and gestures inspired by love and compassion.
A range of core College initiatives such as Lennie’s Van, our Warruwi Partnership, our educational facilities in Bangladesh and our vitally important local, national and international social action activities all contribute to The Amiel Society which disperses the funds raised through these programs, thereby supporting disadvantaged youth.
Launched in early 2018, Lennie’s Van is a St Leonard’s College initiative founded on our strong sense of community.
Senior School students who volunteer to assist at our Lennie’s Van food services are involved in attending several different Bayside locations delivering a food service program to disadvantaged members of our community who have been identified as ‘food vulnerable’ and who are often at a social and economic disadvantage.
In reflecting upon our services over the course of 2019, it is estimated that we served 760 breakfasts, made 532 children’s lunches for school, dispersed over 1,400 loaves of bread, over 1,600 bread rolls and approximately 200kg of fresh fruit and vegetables, made pikelets and toasties for approximately 1,140 patrons at afternoon tea and served lunch consisting of homemade soup, fresh salad rolls and homebaked treats to approximately 1,200 patrons. All of these services have been provided to those in need in our local community who benefit not only from the food provided but also from the social interaction the service offers due to the social isolation they experience.
We invite you to view the below animation for further insight into this College initiative.
Our partnership with Fred Hyde Co-operation in Development (CO-ID) in Bangladesh extends over 20 years and is a testament to the deep commitment demonstrated by our College community to provide education to children who otherwise would not have access to schooling. St Leonard’s College proudly funded one of the first of the CO-ID schools. As of 2020, we now fund 3 primary schools and 1 pre-school in Bhola Island, Bangladesh.
Bhola Island is a mud island with a predominantly farming community. The island is home to over 2 million people and they are incredibly poor even by Bangladeshi standards. The basic skills that the western world takes for granted, such as learning to read and write, are only for the fortunate few. By supporting the development of the educational system in Bangladesh, a country still considered to be one of the third world’s poorest, we are helping to create a more optimistic future for these children.
Please see further information and images below.
Students from Bhola Island, Bangladesh attend the Frank Hyde (CO-ID) educational facilities funded by The Amiel Society.
This image features the inside of one of the schools funded by The Amiel Society.
The girls sit on one side and the boys sit on the other.
Retention rates to the end of the primary schooling tend to be higher for girls than boys as once boys reach 9 or 10 they are considered a farming resource and may be required to engage in manual labour.
Exercise is a valuable component of the education these children are receiving.
In the past girls in particular have not been encouraged to exercise.
The Amiel Society has been established as a Public Benevolent Institution (PBI) which has an official charity status with the main purpose of directly contributing to the relief of poverty, sickness and suffering.
This PBI charity status ensures both charity tax concessions and deductible gift recipient status from the Australian Taxation Office.
It allows the College to ensure the prudent management of the funds raised through our social action initiatives such as Lennie’s Van and our Bangladesh education program.