The dozen or so boys who attend the Ngurang-gu Yalbilinya Program (Wiradjuri for "place of learning") have even more incentive to go to school thanks to a $32,000 donation from Newcrest Mining's Cadia Valley Operations for their very own gym.
The Ngurang-gu Yalbilinya Program is an innovative education model created in early 2021 which provides a student-focused environment addressing engagement, attendance, literacy and numeracy along with culturally driven programs aimed at establishing and/or improving young Aboriginal male's connection to culture and community.
The $32,000 donation made by Cadia's Community Partnership Program has allowed the program to develop tailored fitness programs to educate young Aboriginal males in the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. The equipment includes exercise bikes, rowers and SkiErg machines which simulate the motion of Nordic skiing.
Ngurang-gu Yalbilinya Student Support Officer, Mark Polley said the fitness equipment was already having a positive impact on the students.
"The gym equipment has not only enhanced the program, it has also enhanced the boys quality of life through exercise and their perceptions on the importance of healthy choices and a healthy lifestyle," he said.
The program is facilitated by high school teachers Tim Bennett and Scott Sullivan, and was instigated by Orange Aboriginal Lands Council and the Orange Aboriginal Medical Services to provide a more "holistic" approach to education.
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