Dreaming Project Milestone! Fijian Village School Approved and Teacher Funding Secured

Destination Dreaming received some extremely exciting news in our inbox this week. Nasivikoso Village, home to our longest partnership in Fiji, is now one step closer to their own primary school.

Currently, the village’s children must walk for almost two hours to attend school at a neighbouring village, a journey which becomes dangerous and often impassable in the wet season. We are thrilled to report that after 18 months of negotiation, the Fijian Ministry of Education has this week approved the establishment of a school in Nasivikoso and funding for a teacher. Read more

Dreaming Project Success! Funding Secured for Clean Drinking Water System in Fiji

After 14 months of lobbying for funding and assistance, Destination Dreaming has been advised that the Rotary Pacific Water Foundation has approved our proposal for funding for a water project in Fiji. The grant is to provide access to clean drinking water for the remote village of Nasivikoso in the highlands of Vitu Levu, Fiji. The grant includes all piping, fittings, water tanks, professional tradesperson, as well as construction and maintenance training of the system for local villagers. The grant will also provide material to thoroughly clean and secure the water source (natural spring) for the village and protect against waterborne diseases. The work is expected to be finished on the 24th of June 2011 and will be officially commissioned the following week. Read more

Samoan Adventure, Culture and Rugby for 23 Melbourne High Students

Talofa Lava,

Over 11 nights and 12 days during the school holidays, 23 Melbourne High School students, two teachers/Rugby Managers, one very brave parent, an inspirational Rugby/Life Coach and a very lucky Destination Dreaming Expedition Leader travelled to Samoa. The school group travelled on a 12-day Destination Dreaming Sports/Service tour to experience a combination of adventure, culture, education and sport. Read more

Sad Farewell At the Conclusion of the Latest Beyond Billabong Program

It was a sad farewell for Destination Dreaming Program Manager Kate Miller this week, following the conclusion of the second Beyond Billabong program for young indigenous women. Kate led a month-long life skills and training program for 12 girls from Mornington Island, Normanton, Mount Isa and Murgen. Highlights included mustering cattle on horseback in Longreach, cooking homemade apple pies at the local school and scaling a dam wall in a troopy.

After four weeks living together on a challenging and emotional program, it was extremely hard to stay goodbye. Kate now heads to Indonesia for some waves and to check out potential school itinerary and project options.

Melbourne High School Rugby 2011

Melbourne High School rugby hit Samoa in April, on a Destination Dreaming Cross-Cultural rugby program.

The team played matches against three local high schools, followed by informal periods allowing the boys from the two cultures to interact. The program saw Melbourne High School develop a relationship with Afega Primary School, which has subsequently led to the donation of a set of computers and installation for the school.

The feedback from the boys was amazing- having gone over focusing on the rugby, they soon recognised that the real beauty of the program was in the relatioships they would build and through an amazing experience of the Samoan culture.

Neelson and Stefan talk below about their time in Samoa:

Melbourne High School

19 students and 2 teachers from Melbourne High School spent the Easter holidays building relationships with West Arnhem College in Kakadu. Destination Dreaming has connected the two schooling communities, to share a cross-cultural exchange and support in mathematics tutoring.

The Melbourne students spent a week with the Jabiru campus, facilitating maths tutoring sessions- as maths is an identified need at the remote school and a strength of Melbourne High. The Melbourne students spent an equal amount of time learning- about indigenous culture and life in a remote town. The students ate at the local mess with workers at the nearby mine, learned how to make didgeridoos with a local elder and spotted crocodiles whilst cruising over beautiful Yellow Water.

The program will continue next September 2012, when the next group of students will visit Jabiru and continue the program. Melbourne High School plans to continue the maths tutoring remotely over the internet in between programs.

Check out more program photos via this link to the Facebook album.

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Destination Dreaming Staff Are Flat Out For the Month of April!

Highlights include:

Melbourne High School students are heading to Jabiru on a cross-cultural/community service expedition, led by Expedition Manager Kalen Schloss. Stay tuned for an expedition report later this month.

Program Manager Kate Miller is leading a 4-week vocational training and life skills program for young Aboriginal women from Mornington Island in outback QLD.

Program Coordinator Clint Miller is touring Samoa with the Melbourne High School Rugby team. The inaugral tour will see the boys meet the Samoan Prime Minister, as well as playing against local schools and working in rural and coastal villages.

Keeping the dream alive…

Battening Down the Hatches in Samoa’s capital

Destination Dreaming Program Staff Kate and Clint Miller have been greeted in Samoa by torrential rain, demolished sea walls and more flooding.

Thinking we’d escaped the floods in Australia, we arrived into Apia where locals were experiencing their worst day of flooding for the year and preparing for the onslaught of Cyclone Wilma. En route to our first meeting, we drove through water up to the van doors, and rain so heavy that we were at a loss as to what the country-side looked like.

As conditions worsened, it was evident that we would find ourselves stranded in Apia in less than inspiring lodging. For five days, we have explored the small city, venturing down the road from the Pacific Blue hotel- a flooded dirt road, dodging pigs, chickens and mud filled pot holes. Thank goodness for the excellent local Indian restaurant at the end of the street, as it’s been slim picking with many of the local businesses boarded up in preparation for the cyclone. The paneer tikka masala is certainly something to write home about. Read more

Destination Dreaming facilitates Life in Action program, in partnership with Community Solutions

Earlier this month, Destination Dreaming facilitated the inaugural Life in Action program for Sunshine Coast youth. Organised in partnership with local community services organisation Community Solutions, the program targeted youth experiencing domestic violence.

Destination Dreaming staff, Kate and Clint Miller, designed the four-day outdoor adventure and life skills program that was funded by the Queensland Government’s Department of Communities, Sport and Recreation. The program provides an opportunity for young people to experience the outdoors and interact with their peers, through activities such as surf awareness, body boarding, team challenges and ropes courses. Read more