The I CAN Network


I CAN Network has come to Echuca.  In May, Chris Varney, CEO I CAN Network and Kate Andrews, I CAN Murray Goulburn Manager, presented the I CAN talk to all secondary students at St Joseph’s College, Echuca College and Echuca Specialist School on the one day and also ran a combined staff Professional Development session after school and a Parent Information Night in the evening.

The I CAN message has certainly got out there with 16 secondary students from the three schools participating in the Secondary Mentoring program which commenced in July. Already, after three sessions, the group has settled into the program, are mixing well and getting involved in the group activities.  The program is held at Bendigo TAFE Echuca Campus and facilitated by Network Leader Sally Smith and Mentor Bec Cheep on a Thursday.  


Kyabram is in their second year of I CAN with the secondary mentoring program half way through their 15 week program facilitated by Kate Andrews and Will Baum at Kyabram Community and Learning Centre. This group includes some mentees from last year’s program who are completing Stage 2 of the structured program and are training to be become future mentors.

‘The Imagination Club’ for Grade 3-6 students, run by Kate Andrews and Sally Smith at Kyabram, is proving popular with the 16 students with a ‘big imagination’.

All the mentoring programs follow a series of modules over 15 sessions to develop strong leadership and communication skills, teamwork, personal motivation and strengths, saying I CAN, planning and organising. The outcomes for participants include an increase in self-esteem, social connection, optimism and self-confidence.

I CAN Network has just celebrated its Fifth Birthday. Check out the website - and facebook page ‘The I CAN Network’.

August 2018

Continuum of Need

Wellbeing co-ordinators from schools across our region attended a training session at the end of May on implementing the Continuum of Need tool. The tool is used both to map the needs of students on a continuum and provide contact details for support services.

Vanessa McCormick from St Arnaud P-12 College delivered the training session. St Arnaud has been using the tool for several years and the service agencies there meet every six weeks to ensure that vulnerable young people are appropriately supported. All students in St Arnaud are now mapped beginning at kindergarten. As needs are identified and supported the improvements for each student can also be mapped on the tool and any issues quickly addressed.

A service directory of Echuca agencies has been created by the CCLLEN and linked to the tool. A Kyabram version is currently being created. 

May 2018

Echuca Moama Beacon Foundation

The two major combined school Beacon events, the Charter Signing Ceremony held in April and the Careers Expo in May, were both outstanding events, involving 370 Year 9/10 students from Echuca College, Moama Anglican Grammar School, River City Christian College and St Joseph’s College.

charter signing St J.jpgOne of the highlights of the Charter Signing Ceremony held at St Joseph’s College was the keynote speaker, Joanna Werner from Werner Productions, (pictured with St Joseph's students) who shared her story from growing up in Gunbower to becoming an internationally recognised television and movie producer. Joanna encouraged the students to not feel disadvantaged because they’re from the country, but to follow their passions and take advantage of any opportunities.

The students respectfully signed the Charter Boards, pledging their commitment to completing their schooling, finding employment or attending higher education.

Careers Expo.jpgThe Beacon Careers Expo held at Rich River Golf Club Resort on 22 May was kicked off by a panel of speakers from four different career areas (pictured above). Molly Leech (Edge FM Radio) Michael Broad (Rochester Motor Cycles), Sheree Anderson (Cosgriff Lawyers) and Bim Sherwood (Advance Computing) shared their varied career stories and passed on advice to the students on how to get the most out of the day and making decisions about their future career pathways.

The students were allocated five workshops from 52 career workshops on offer, run by local business members. We received excellent feedback from the students and some great anecdotal stories on the value of these sessions. The evaluation completed after the event indicated a good shift of the students having some idea of their career pathway before the expo to a better idea of their career pathway after the event.

Rich River Golf Club was an ideal location for the Expo providing a variety of different spaces to accommodate the diverse range of careers featured. We received amazing support from the local business community.

mock interviews.jpgMock Interviews: Year 9 students from Echuca College, Moama Anglican Grammar School and River City Christian College have completed Mock Job Interviews conducted by community members at the individual schools.  St Joseph’s College’s interviews are coming up in September.

All the students had the opportunity to prepare for the interviews with their school’s career program and Interview Technique Sessions facilitated by Jacq Campbell, CCLLEN Structured Workplace Learning Coordinator and Beacon. The students have been responsive and engaged in these sessions which included handshake activities and practising their responses to interview questions.

Thanks for the support from our community members Mick Kenna and Sue Turner and organisations that provided interviewers: Campaspe Shire, CLRS, NuManz Embroidery, NAB, C4EM, Insurance House, Vivid, Bunnings Echuca, Murray River Council and Moama Bowling Club.

Opening of New Office

We invited CCLLEN members, stakeholders and our neighbours to the official opening of our new premises in Haverfield St, Echuca.

Uncle Rick Ronnan welcomed us to country and performed a smoking ceremony, before students from Echuca South Primary cut the ribbon to open the building.

We then enjoyed afternoon tea together.

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