Deputy Head Prefects 2021

Olivia Charles and Madi Loudon

Olivia:

As one of the Deputy Head Prefects, I have had a lot of fun running the Student Council this year, a safe forum where students can come together to share their concerns and organise fundraisers.

We arranged the school’s involvement in the Neonatal Trust Scent Hearts Project, an initiative aimed at maintaining the bond between parents and neonatal babies, through scent and love. This involved sewing cotton hearts which were distributed in support packs for NZ families.

The Student Council also ran a bake sale for CanTeen NZ. We raised $251.00 to help support young people living with cancer.

Additionally, we opted into the Free Period Product initiative for NZ Schools, to acquire free sanitary products for students. These products are now accessible in the main school bathrooms at Columba.

With the Prefect Executive Team, I have also been involved in fundraising for the Free Wheelchair Mission, an initiative that donates wheelchairs to developing nations. Through non-uniform and collection days we succeeded in raising over $2600.00. The money raised was matched by the Free Wheelchair Mission, which meant we were able to donate 39 wheelchairs, surpassing our goal of 25!

As a prefect, I have been proud to lead the establishment of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Blues at Columba. Columba is the first school in NZ to recognise the STEM achievement in this way. We were amazed to receive support from both the Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, and her Chief Science Advisor, Dame Juliet Gerrard. A Zoom call was held between Juliet and the Blues recipients to discuss pathways for women into STEM. Columba is in a strong position to encourage women in STEM, and by celebrating such achievements with Blues, we hope to motivate others around NZ to do the same.

Throughout this year I have felt lucky to be surrounded and supported by a great team of prefects and teachers, all who have helped with the many fundraising and school projects.

Madi:

As one of the Deputy Head Prefects this year, I ran the Student Council with Olivia. It was a great opportunity that allowed me to acknowledge the concerns and queries of the students, as well as implement their needs and ideas. As well as this, we were able to run a number of fundraisers for organisations and charities.

A bake sale was held for CanTeen NZ, a charity that supports young teens with cancer. Members of the Student Council brought the baked goods and we ended up raising $251.00.

As well as this, we organised the Neonatal Trust Scent Hearts Project, which involved sewing cotton hearts for the parents of, and babies in, Neonatal Units around NZ. A big thank you to Mrs Hillier and the sewing club for their contribution towards making the hearts.

We also opted into the Free Period Product scheme for NZ Schools, which allowed period products to be provided in bathrooms throughout the school.

I have learnt a lot from running the Student Council. I now appreciate how much work goes on behind the scenes of every situation. As a result, my communication and organisational skills have improved considerably. 

As part of the Executive Prefects team Olivia, Rosie and I implemented a lot of activities around the school, liaising between students and staff. A part of this was fundraising for the Free Wheelchair Mission, an initiative to donate wheelchairs to developing countries. We raised money through non-uniform and collection days and were able to raise over $2600.00. These funds were matched by the Free Wheelchair Mission, which meant that we were able to donate 39 wheelchairs, surpassing our goal of 25!

A huge thank you to all the teachers and students who have helped the Student Council. With your support, we have been able to action a lot of the students' wishes. I have been unbelievably lucky to have had this opportunity, so thank you to everyone involved.