Tara Anglican School for Girls supports RIDBC

27/08/14
Tara students enjoy spending time with students from RIDBC Alice Betteridge School

Five Tara Anglican School for Girls students have connected with students from Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children (RIDBC), having reached out to RIDBC to establish ways to increase their community involvement.

At the beginning of term three the Tara students began meeting with Annie, Kirsten and Anna from RIDBC Alice Betteridge School, which caters for students who have a significant vision or hearing loss as well as a level of intellectual impairment. The visits have continued fortnightly ever since.

“The Tara girls meet up with our students for lunch and a chat, and it’s been a really successful program,” said RIDBC Alice Betteridge School Curriculum Co-ordinator, Jessteene Clifford.  “Annie, Kirsten and Anna all have vision loss so there are often barriers to building the skills they need to interact with their sighted peers.

“The visits are supporting our students to develop relationships, communication skills and life skills – such as how to order food at a café - in a fun, casual environment where they can have a laugh and talk about girls stuff!”

“When Annie started with the group she was very shy, but she is now growing in confidence. The Tara girls are fantastic role models and we thank them for their ongoing support.”

The Tara students have thoroughly enjoyed forming friendships with the students from RIDBC.

“We are so appreciative that we have had the opportunity to form a relationship with girls from RIDBC Alice Betteridge School. We hope to develop a long-term relationship between the schools to extend Tara’s community involvement,” said Tara student, Emily Richardson.

Tara student, Joanne Lim, echoed this sentiment.

“We have particularly cherished the strong bond we have formed with Kirsten, Annie and Anna. We have been astounded, especially, by the exuberance and positive attitude of the RIDBC students which has created a greater understanding and appreciation within ourselves as Tara students,” said Joanne.

RIDBC is Australia’s largest non-government provider of therapy, education and diagnostic services for people with hearing or vision loss, supporting thousands of adults, children and their families, each year.

RIDBC relies heavily on fundraising and community support to be able to continue to make a difference in children's lives.  In order to maintain its intensive educational and research programs, the organisation needs to raise approximately $2.5 million every month.