Each year we reflect on the diversity of the boarders’ backgrounds and this year is no exception, with boarders coming from Adelaide, Alice Springs (NT), Avenue Range, Balhannah, Bordertown, Broken Hill (NSW), Byron Bay (NSW), Casuarina (NT), Ceduna, China, Coonawarra, Copley, Crafers, Glenroy, Hawker, Hong Kong, Jabiru (NT), Jamestown, Karama (NT), Keith, Kingston, Lucindale, Loxton, Malaysia, Meadows, Millicent, Moonta, Mount Gambier, Mount Osmond, Mundulla, Naracoorte, Nightcliff (NT), Oodnadatta, Padthaway, Palmerston (NT), Paringa, Penola, Port Augusta, Port Kelly, Port Lincoln, Renmark, Ringwood (Vic), Roxby Downs, Saudi Arabia, Sevenhill, Singapore, Smithfield (Qld), Streaky Bay, North Sydney (NSW), Tailem Bend, Tanunda, Victor Harbor, Vanuatu, Vietnam and Woomera.

For boarders there are many opportunities that provide them with unrivalled memories that they will never forget; one such example was the recent trip to the Gold Coast on the March long weekend. Twenty-six boarders (ranging in ages from Years 7 to 12) and four staff members (Mr Shillabeer, Mr Lee, Ms Hunt and Mrs Crowhurst) had the opportunity to head north-east to the so-called sunshine state (it rained more there than in Adelaide during the visit, on two of the three days) to indulge their thrill-seeking tendencies. On the Friday evening, in excited anticipation of beckoning theme parks, the group boarded a plane for Brisbane. On landing, Mr Shillabeer was waiting with our coach and we headed off to the Surfers Paradise YHA ready for an early start the next day. Over the next 3 days the boarders were treated or subjected to (depending on your stance) being thrown through the air; lurching; spiralling; and getting splashed, soaked and dunked, all with a smile on their face. We visited the combined theme park of Dream World and White Water World, Movie World and Wet’n’Wild. The highlights included the exhilarating Superman Escape, the family-friendly Scooby-Doo Spooky Coaster and the teeth-clenching Kamikaze water slide.

On Saturday night we returned to the theme park precinct to attend The Outback Spectacular. This entailed not only a remarkable show but a delicious Aussie-inspired three-course meal consisting of home-style pumpkin soup, tender eye fillet seasoned with Kakadu plum sauce, and finished off with a baked apple pie and cream, which was graciously hand delivered to us. The current performance showcased talented actors, both human and animals, with the theme of Australia’s High Country Legends including the stories of faithful ‘Red dog’, 'the world's greatest bareback rider’ May Wirth, and the outback mailman Tom Kruse to name a few. What a brilliant way for a boarder to spend a Saturday night—with good food, entertainment and, to top it off, sharing it with your mates. On Sunday evening we were treated to a BBQ cooked by the YHA backpackers and then we ventured into Surfers to browse the diverse wares on offer at the beachfront markets. We also managed to sneak in some shopping time at the adjacent Marina Pier shopping mall and Brisbane DFO on our way home. By the time we reached the respective boarding houses late at night there were some very tired but contented boarders ready for bed. The weekend was a terrific opportunity for the boarders and staff to not only see another part of Australia but enhance relationships in a different setting.

Closer to home, a few boarders with the help of some day students have been volunteering at Westcare Church, Whitmore Square, helping to serve lunch to some of the church’s clients. According to the coordinator of the program, ‘I was very impressed with the work ethic and attitude of the students and I really appreciated the way they went about their work, as they demonstrated good people skills, seemed really happy to help and interacted well with the clients’. This epitomises the ‘can do’ qualities that boarders demonstrate not only in the community but on a daily basis.

Mr Shillabeer
Head of Campbell House

Mrs Crowhurst
Head of Turner House

(To preview photo gallery, please click on a photo below).