A Homework HELP Club, started by a group of lawyers at a small decile one school in Porirua, is set to spread across the country helping hundreds of children get ahead.
Over the past two years a successful Homework HELP Club has been running at decile one Holy Family School, a primary school in Porirua, Wellington.
The club would see volunteers from Minter Ellison Rudd Watts law firm, in central Wellington, dedicate an afternoon a week to help children with their homework.
Stacey Shortall, the corporate lawyer behind the initiative, says her goal is to make a Homework HELP Club available to every decile one primary school in New Zealand.
And, she says, she needs help to do so.
Shortall was the winner of the 2015 Women of Influence Awards Community and Not-For-Profit award and is well known for her work that goes above and beyond the call of duty.
On Wednesday, Shortall addressed a number of business people in Wellington and told them of her plans to expand the Homework HELP Club nationally and asked for their help in doing so. She will do the same in Auckland, on March 30.
Shortall says establishing a Homework HELP Club in a decile one school is an opportunity to provide different role models for talented hard-working Kiwi children and to encourage those kids to “dream big”.
“Homework HELP Club brings business and school communities closer together to support our kids to learn – and learn more about each other at the same time.
“We want more Kiwi kids opening doors to brighter futures.”
Wednesday afternoon also saw about 20 pupils from Holy Family School in Porirua, with their teachers, visit the central Wellington offices of Minter Ellison Rudd Watts in order to see where their homework helpers spend their day.
Shortall says it might seem a small thing but none of the children had been into an office building like the one that houses Minter Ellison Rudd Watts.
” The experience was eye-opening for them.”
Shortall says the pupils at Holy Family School in Porirua are “talented, engaged and enthusiastic”.
“Like all kids, they want big things for their future. They have hard-working parents who do everything they can to provide for their families.”
Chris Theobald, principal of Holy Family School, also spoke about how Homework HELP Club provides great support to families and enables kids to meet people from different walks of life.
Theobald says some students at Holy Family School are now talking about being lawyers.
For more information and images:
Stacey Shortall: 0212463116
Stacey Shortall has established WHO DID YOU HELP TODAY™, a movement seeking to connect skilled people with not-for-profit community projects.
“Skilled people want to give back. Community projects need free expertise. Our mission is to connect this want and need so that social good grows in New Zealand.
One of ways we will do this is by providing an electronic platform that will match skilled people with community projects depending on their interest, capability, location and availability.
Our goal is to make it simple and fast for matches to happen so that more community projects can succeed and the lives of more New Zealanders can be improved.”