Today marks the commencement of National Reconciliation Week 2023, a significant National event that fosters understanding, respect, and reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. In partnership with our Reconciliation Captains Helena and Lucy, Indigenous Coordinator, Christa Cook, will lead and facilitate several educational initiatives, cultural activities, and conversations, to deepen our knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures, and achievements. As a school community, we have the unique opportunity to shape the hearts and minds of future generations. By embracing National Reconciliation Week, we demonstrate our commitment to cultivating a society where reconciliation is not just an abstract concept, but a lived reality. Through understanding, respect, and meaningful engagement, we can forge a path towards healing, unity, and a shared future of justice and equality for all.
Head of Senior School
Head of Middle School
This week is National Allergy Week. A number of Melbourne schools, including CGS and CGGS, have planned casual dress / allergy awareness days, with gold coin donations going to the National Allergy Centre of Excellence (NACE) – to help accelerate allergy research in Australia.
We were delighted to welcome NACE Director and Associate Professor, Kirsten Perrett, to the school this week. She gave an informative presentation to students at Assembly to help raise the awareness of allergies.
Some facts about allergies:
Australia is the allergy capital of the world!
Our Casual Dress Day is Friday, 26 May – Live to the Max Day. This campaign is largely driven by the McKenzie’s and another family in honour of their son’s, Max and James, who both sadly died after having an allergic reaction in 2021. We are pleased to be supporting this initiative as we continue to educate students around allergy awareness and current research in this area.
UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 aspires to zero hunger. Representing Türkiye at a Model UN hosted by McKinnon Secondary College and the United Nations Association of Australia, Year 10 and 11 students, Cate, Grace, Thasanya and Joanne successfully crafted, argued and presented an amendment to clause 2.7 of a draft resolution seeking to reduce hunger to zero.
“Clause 2.7 Reminds States, particularly developed nations, of their moral and legal obligations in providing sufficient aid investments and assistance to developing countries by agreeing to invest at least 1% of their Gross National Income (GNI) in aid programs for rural infrastructure and agricultural research in developing nations.”
The Camberwell Girls team contended that while Türkiye is a developed country, the recent earthquake has impacted access to resources for Turkish people. Alongside this, the challenges of supporting an influx of immigrants means the current clause is restrictive. They successfully persuaded other members states in the Model UN that clause 2.7 was too limiting as it only provided aid for developing countries. The following proposed amendment was passed and added to the draft resolution – an impressive outcome for the team.
“2.11 Urges wealthy developed nations to address zero hunger by providing agricultural aid and research to regions experiencing conflict or natural disasters, to assist in recovery and emergency relief.”
Participation in the Model UN provided our students with a real-world problem to research, debate and problem solve. In addition, they learnt some subtle diplomacy skills and honed their communication skills as proud ambassadors for Camberwell Girls.
Dr Charlotte Forwood
Director of Learning Design and Development
Head of Commerce
CGGS held its annual Celebrating Diversity Week (CDW) from 15-19 May. CDW seeks to amplify the voices of those diverse in their gender, sexuality, religion, culture, neurodiversity, and life experiences to foster increased awareness and support for these communities. As part of the celebration, a range of activities were held throughout the week to unify the diverse CGGS community.
To promote the religious diversity of the CGGS staff and students, Faith & Service Captain Salwa curated an exhibit titled “Illuminating Identity,” where staff and students displayed artefacts of religious significance. They were also given diversity badges, designed by House Captain, May.
Moreover, we were fortunate to learn more about how video games are helping improve neurodiverse children’s development of social skills through an engaging presentation from Matt and Jess of Next Level Collaboration.
On Wednesday, there was a free dress day and bracelet making workshop as part of our celebration of gender and sexual diversity; all proceeds from the day were donated to Minus-18, which provides support to queer youth.
On Thursday, as part of our celebration of diverse experiences, students and staff helped create care packages for women fleeing domestic violence, which were donated through Impact for Women.
To close off the week, International Captains Cindy and Emily held a Kahoot about cultures around the world.
Overall, it was a fulfilling week, and lovely to witness the CGGS community engage in the “diverse” range of activities on offer.
School Wellbeing Captain
With much excitement and anticipation, our Year 9 students had the opportunity to meet Kristina Karlsson, founder and former Creative Director of global design and stationery powerhouse, kikki.K, and a pioneer of entrepreneurship in Australia.
As they embark on their Power and Enterprise unit in Commerce and the creation of their own fictional small businesses, the Year 9 cohort was eager to hear about Kristina’s inspirational journey as a businessperson and her achievements at both kikki.K and in her current business venture, Dream Life.
Kristina spoke to a captive audience about her personal entrepreneurship journey, from the initial spark of inspiration at 3.00am one morning to the entire creative and design process. She was candid in her account of the challenges facing start-ups and emphasised the importance of persistence, resilience, courage, and hard work as the catalysts of success. Kristina inspired both our students and staff with her honesty, wisdom, and encouragement to confidently take risks and to always dream big.
We are incredibly grateful to Kristina for her generosity and support of the CGGS Commerce program, and for providing our students with an enriching learning experience that they are unlikely to forget.
Head of Commerce
On Monday 15 May, students from Years 8&9 Chinese classes visited the Museum of Chinese Australian History.
Through a guided museum tour and a Chinatown tour, students explored the history, heritage, and culture of Australia’s Chinese community. During the visit, students attended a number of permanent exhibitions relating to Chinese experiences in the 19th century Australian Goldfields. The collected objects tell stories that highlight the relationship between Australian and Chinese culture. The One Million Stories Exhibition, details Australia’s Chinese history and showcases the contribution Chinese Australians have made to Australian Society over the last 200 years.
This excursion was during Diversity Week, which further enhanced students’ understanding of the diverse background and characteristics of Chinese Australians past and present and their effort to strive for inclusion in the community and today’s society.
Opportunity Challenge empowers Year 8 students through an exciting service-learning program.
Camberwell Girls Grammar School (CGGS) and the students from Camberwell Grammar School (CGS) (Boys) unite to raise funds for Opportunity International. This organisation uses microfinance loans to break the cycle of poverty and support education, health, and women’s safety globally.
Students form groups of 6-10, investing $10 each to create a viable business concept that addresses community needs. They connect, refine ideas, and donate all profits to Opportunity International. Opportunity Challenge cultivates entrepreneurship, teamwork, and a positive impact on global communities.
The student fete stalls/services will take place on 16 June, and we encourage all students to support this great initiative.
Head of Middle School
On 17 May we were fortunate enough to be chosen to compete in the 2023 Plain English-Speaking competition held by VCAA. The competition involved presenting a six-minute speech on a social issue we were passionate about, followed by a 3-minute impromptu speech on a surprise topic. The experience allowed us to listen to some amazing takes on social issues while developing our own point of view and voice on a topic that we were passionate about. The competition was amazing, and we are both proud of our work.
Participating in this competition has taught us the importance of effective communication. Crafting a compelling speech requires careful organization, clarity of thought, and the ability to connect with the audience. We learned to structure our ideas coherently, use persuasive language, and employ storytelling techniques to captivate listeners. These skills will be used to convey messages concisely and persuasively, whether it is in a professional setting, academic environment, or even everyday conversations. Overall, this was a delightful experience as it allowed us to meet new people, improve our public speaking skills and educate ourselves further on different social issues.
Sara R and Charlize C, Year 11
A big congratulations to Charlize and Sara for being chosen as our CGGS representatives for this prestigious competition. They presented at such a high standard among a field of strong competitors with Sara being awarded as the Runner Up. Sara presented an insightful speech about hidden misogyny in our modern society and Charlize delivered a new perspective on body positivity and the impact social media has on body perception in teens. Thank you to Lindsay Hill for supporting them on the day.
Head of English