Support continues for Kokoda trek

By Yarrawonga Chronicle

An expedition to Kokoda is a life-changing and eye-opening experience which year 10 and 11 students of Yarrawonga College P-12 have the opportunity to experience every second year.

To assist the students to travel to Kokoda, ClubMulwala have provided support and sponsorship in the way of $25000 for each Kokoda group that occurs biennially. 

ClubMulwala CEO Alan Rowe said he was pleased to announce the club’s continued sponsorship of this program and would one day love to do the expedition himself. 

“This is a program we at ClubMulwala take pride in sponsoring,” Mr Rowe said.

“It is really a no brainer, it is a wonderful program that changes the student’s lives.

“When our board comes together and this is laid on the desk we do not even think twice, both the board and the club in general are proud to sponsor the Kokoda trip.” 

Yarrawonga College P-12 students as well as teachers Cameron Scott and Fluer Rhodes took part in the nine-day expedition in September after numerous months of training at school and in the gym.

The trip is part of the Kokoda Track Leadership Program where students and teachers hike in the same footsteps a number of Australians took during World War II.

Students selected have to go through a demanding selection process to create an opportunity for students to develop into ANZAC Ambassadors – providing high level speaking and ambassador duties that represent the community in the ANZAC tradition and to model the College’s values at all times.

The students and teachers also fundraise in the year leading up to the trek and each is supported by individual sponsors.

Two of the 2019 travelling group, Heidi Magro and Hayley Bigger said it was an experience they will never forget.

“It really is life-changing, I grew as a person and now have more knowledge of what happened over there and the conditions they had to endure,” Hayley said. 

“It was just amazing and gives us a different perspective on things when we got to slightly see how things were for them,” Heidi added.

Yarrawonga College 9-12 Campus Principal Jo McCarthy said the program was one of the schools most important and the support they receive is very much appreciated.  

“Students that have experienced the Kokoda trip come back and have a deeper appreciation for ANZAC Day and Remembrance Day and what those soldiers endured,” Ms McCarthy said.

“I got the privilege to accompany a school group a number of years ago and it is hard to put into words the experience.

“We’d just love to thank ClubMulwala for their continued sponsorship and the support they provide.”