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Support key message at Beacon charter signing day

Year 10 students from Echuca College and St Joseph’s College signed the Echuca-Moama Beacon Foundation's 2014 charter pledge on Friday.

RENEE THOMPSON May 6, 2014 3:20am

St Joseph's Bianca Mammone, Jane McLeish, Finella O'Connor, Stephanie Pearson, Tyler Crawford, Absent: Edwina Bradford-O'Sullivan at the Beacon Foundation Echuca Moama Beacon Foundation Charter Signing Ceremony last week.


Beacon leaders at two schools involved in the Echuca-Moama Beacon Foundation took part in the foundation’s annual charter signing day on Friday.

Year 10 students from Echuca College and St Joseph’s College signed the 2014 charter pledge, which commits them to exploring career options and applying themselves to studies, training or employment when they finish school.

The third Beacon school, Moama Anglican Grammar, will have its signing day on June 17.

Echuca-Moama Beacon Foundation co-ordinator Cheryl Sweeney said the pledge was a public commitment to the Beacon program and its aims.

‘‘The students sign on to say we’ll do everything we can to stay in school, or get training or find work,’’ she said.

‘‘It’s also about saying, you don’t have to do this on your own. There are community people and business people out there to support you.’’

Mrs Sweeney said there were 300 students and teachers at the charter signing at Moama Bowling Club, as well as about 35 guests including business and community leaders.

Rick Ronnan performed a welcome to country at the start of the event.

Special guests included Campaspe Shire mayor Ian Maddison, Murray Shire’s Steve Hazell, Echuca-Moama Beacon Foundation Board chair Rod Pearl and board members.

Cr Maddison said the idea for the charter signing was a ‘‘great concept’’.

‘‘It’s good to see that this charter gives students the commitment to sign up to the outcome,’’ he said.

‘‘It gives them a focus. It’s the start of a process in life where when you say something and complete it you get the reward associated with it.’’

He said guest speaker Emma Fitzpatrick, from Articulate Hair Studio, spoke passionately about her journey through the Beacon program.

‘‘Emma signed up when she was 15 and spoke very proudly about her achievements,’’ he said.

‘‘It was a terrific, uplifting address.’’

The pledge boards will be displayed in each school.

The Beacon Foundation has been active in Echuca-Moama since 2002.

The twin towns were the first on the mainland to adopt the program which originated in Tasmania.

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