16 June 2017

World Vision Youth Conference 2017

​On Tuesday, 10 students had the opportunity to attend the annual World Vision Youth​ Conference to inspire young leaders for a better world. Held at the Sydney Convention Centre, the day began with a simulation​ about 'choice' and how our choices can impact those of others around the world.

We listened to keynote speaker Abe Nouk - a Sudanese refugee and spoken-word poet. He reflected on the gratitude he has for his acceptance to Australia. We also heard from the 2017 NSW Australian of the year, Deng Adut, also from South Sudan - a former child soldier. He spoke of his difficult childhood and the impact of war on people in his home country. His story was one of great resilience and clearly made a significant impact on the audience. I had the opportunity to speak to him personally afterwards and he is now working as a lawyer in criminal and family law. His journey has been truly inspirational.

World Vision chose these guest speakers to inspire us to use our skills and make a choice to help others positively.​

We then heard from some people who are doing just that. Justine Flynn, co-founder and director of 'thankyou' spoke of her passion to make a difference and the origins of the thankyou brand. It is now supporting over 750,000 people around the world with access to clean water, education, health and hygiene.

We discussed practical ways to support development around the world and strategies for the youth leaders of today to make a difference.

The girls who attended the conference came home inspired to run the World Vision fundraising a​ppeal in our school.The 40 Hour Famine this year is supporting the refugee crisis, in particular those from South Sudan and Syria. As we are all aware, this is an extremely pressing cause in great need of support. Globally, more than 65 million people have been forced out of their homes due to conflict. The refugee crisis has hit a size equal to that of post World War II, and it is time to support others in such great need.

Please see the link here to join our team or donate. Your sponsorship will support programs that help refugee children and their families in Syria, South Sudan and neighbouring countries.​

Ms Sarah Charles
Year 10 Mentor / Service Education / Humanities Teacher