The community of Cerdon has a rich tradition of care.
Catholic education supports students becoming more informed about the world and their role in its future.
These matters are important to all young people and Cerdon discusses global issues with our students in a supervised school setting. Social justice initiatives empower young people to be part of a solution.
There’s no better way for students to express the principles of Catholic social teaching than to stand together with their peers and teachers at school in support of those most in need. This is clearly shown by the continuation of Cerdon's Immersion program for senior students to Maumere Flores, Indonesia, and the College's ongoing commitment to the support of Marist Sisters' Mission initiatives in Fiji and The Philippines.
Marist Social Justice Group
The Marist Social Justice Group began in 2008 when a group of thirteen Year Eleven students approached the Principal, Mrs Baker, about the need for an active social justice presence in the school. It was decided that the group should be run by the students and so the suggestions and decisions come from the students themselves.
The students come together in the Marist way, combining their beliefs, values and practices, to create opportunities for those in the wider global community who are less able to help themselves. There are many leadership roles within the Social Justice framework at Cerdon College, for both senior and junior students. This structure allows all students to contribute to and encourage, an ongoing spirit of cooperation and commitment throughout the school community.
In addition to Caritas Australia’s Project Compassion, which is our primary focus each year, there have been many other activities undertaken by the Social Justice Group. These include:
- raising funds and collecting school equipment for schools in Zambia, New Guinea and Emerton
- sending over 2500 library books to the Marist Sisters’ Mission in Kanosia, New Guinea
- donating to orphanages in the Philippines.
Cerdon’s Knitting Group, open to all students from Years 7-12, works each year to knit rug squares. The squares are sewn together to make knee rugs that are donated to our neighbouring aged care facility, Cardinal Gilroy Village.
The rugs are presented annually, when Cerdon perform a Christmas concert for the residents. To date, over 40 rugs have been donated with more on their way.
Cerdon College is proud to participate in the Vampire Shield, an annual school-based blood donation competition. We have always been ranked in the top five schools in the state for the number of blood donations provided.
Once a term, students’ sixteen years and over are transported by minibus to the Parramatta Donor Centre for the Australian Red Cross Blood Service. They have their blood pressure taken and iron levels checked, and if all is okay they are able to donate 470 ml of their own blood, which saves the lives of up to three people.
This is a true reflection of the wonderful social conscience and community involvement that Cerdon students exhibit.
Volunteers in Action Program
Each year, our Year 11 students spend a week helping others in the local community. They are placed in nursing homes, child care centres, primary schools, and special needs primary schools, where they assist and lend a hand in any way they can.
The students learn a great deal from this experience and develop many workplace and social skills at the same time. Many students are able to use the placement to explore a possible future career option.
On many occasions after the placement, our students continue to volunteer their time and return to the nursing homes and special needs schools, in particular, to visit the residents and children again.