Finding friends easy at Ormiston State School thanks to new buddy bench

FUN TIMES: Vice school captain Declan Tate, school captain Ella Carmichael, vice school captain Georgia Forchert and school captain Kiera Knott play behind grade three and four students William Smith, Charlotte Lloyd and Scarlett Jepson. The three younger students, who have offered to befriend lonely kids, sit on the new buddy bench.

FUN TIMES: Vice school captain Declan Tate, school captain Ella Carmichael, vice school captain Georgia Forchert and school captain Kiera Knott play behind grade three and four students William Smith, Charlotte Lloyd and Scarlett Jepson. The three younger students, who have offered to befriend lonely kids, sit on the new buddy bench.

CHILDREN alone at break times will no longer have any excuse to not find a friend at Ormiston State School.

A buddy bench means the promise of new mates and games of dominoes, shipwreck and tiggy are always close by.

It is all thanks to the hard work of grade six school leaders Ella Carmichael, Keira Knott, Georgia Forchert and Declan Tate, who wanted to help younger pupils find friends without having to ask.

The bench, assembled and painted by the four last Friday, is a place for children to sit while they wait to be tagged for fun.

“I think it is a good idea because some kids are lonely at lunch and they don’t have anyone to play with,” Ella said.

The initiative, which forms part of the school’s chaplaincy program, has already elicited a strong response from students wanting to befriend those on the buddy bench.

Grade three and four students William Smith, Charlotte Lloyd and Scarlett Jepson, who have put their hands up to help out, will keep their eyes on the bench at break times to rescue anyone sitting there.

Their job is to whisk kids away for play.

Charlotte said she often saw others her age walking on the oval without anyone to have fun with.

“Sometimes it can be a bit hard to find a friend,” she said.

The buddy bench program is not the only way kids can be entertained at lunch times.

Sessions of hoola-hooping and other activities are also on offer. 

Guidance officer Veronica Briggs said it was all to help children to feel good about themselves throughout the day.

“The purpose is to help students develop a sense of belonging and connection in the school across all year levels,” she said.

“The students are really engaged.”

The bench used for the buddy program was donated by Victoria Point Bunnings Warehouse.

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop