SPONSORED: As remote community borders in Western Australia remain closed due to COVID-19, Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisation (ACCO), Winun Ngari, has been taking the lead to help students across the west Kimberley region.

While adjusting their usual services to meet the needs of clients in compliance with COVID-19 regulations, Winun Ngari has also been adapting how they work in partnership with other organisations to ensure other services and initiatives are still being delivered.

This was evident in the partnership between Winun Ngari’s Remote School Attendance Strategy (RSAS) team and Derby District High School.

Before schools reopened in WA, the choice was up to parents and carers to decide whether to send their children to school.

This brought a new set of challenges for students, parents and carers, and teachers as they all adapted to a new learning environment.

The RSAS team worked with Derby District to deliver homework packs to students learning from home.

“The packs came along during [the] COVID-19 pandemic when it became optional to send students to school,” said RSAS Program Manager, Johanna Kitching.

Previously working in partnership with Derby District on school attendance and family support, the homework packs became an extension of the work the RSAS team was already undertaking with the high school.

Containing school work and other activities, Kitching said the homework packs were delivered throughout the Derby area including Derby, Pandanus Park community and Mowanjum community.

Not only were the RSAS team boosting education support in the region, they were also supporting the nutrition of future generations.

Along with the homework packs, the RSAS team sourced, put together and distributed breakfast packs to students in Derby, Mowanjum and Pandanus Park.

breakfast packets with weetbix milk fruit and muesli bars
Breakfast packs put together for students in the community. Photo supplied.

Each breakfast pack contained fruit, muesli bars, Weetbix and milk—enough for a well-rounded breakfast fit for a growing body and mind.

Kitching said the RSAS team also donated some of the breakfast packs to Wananami Remote Community School at Mount Barnett Station.

By Hannah Cross