For one young man who graduated from St. Mary MacKillop’s Year 12 class last year, Menslink provided the affirmation, confidence and life skills to help him complete his schooling and to have a genuine sense of his own worth. That he had actually survived and was positive about his own future was testament to the kindness, skill and perseverance of his Menslink mentors.
From being a student with a long history of poor attendance and minimal engagement with school and peers, he became one of four volunteers who provided food at Year 10 celebrations and took a leading role in the College musical. Without Menslink, this change would not have occurred. We understand that he was later working with Menslink to support other troubled young men like himself….a wonderful tribute to those who have supported him.
Menslink has brought iconic local heroes such as the Canberra Raiders to our College and Year assemblies to speak to hundreds of our boys who are aged from 12-18 years. Menslink has recognised the urgent need in our communities for strong, positive male role models for our young men, many of whom are from single parent households. Boys who are often reluctant to ask questions in such forums, were very keen to raise their hands and ask questions at Menslink assemblies because the best questions earned a Raiders gift from David Shillington or one of the other Raiders present.
Recently, Martin and Shane have spent an hour in consecutive Wednesday Pastoral sessions to speak with Year 10 boys about making Relationships work and the dangers to relationships caused by Pornography. Teachers who attended these sessions commented on the engagement and involvement of the students as they were encouraged to ask honest questions and to be answered with honesty and authenticity.
Some student comments:
“Yeah, that was really good! They told it like it is”
“It was good being just boys so we could ask questions”
“They were honest and didn’t give us any bs”
“Hadn’t really thought about what pornography was really about…learnt a lot”
Menslink has become an integral and welcome support for the young men at St. Mary Mackillop College and the community. We are most grateful for their generous involvement in working with us and our parents to build fine boys into fine men and citizens. Menslink’s work is invaluable to our communities.