News & Events

Justice Matters Camp


The Justice Matters Camp is an opportunity for students in Year 9 to 11 in the Sandhurst area to gain social justice and leadership skills at a three-day camp. This year’s camp was at Beechworth and Catherine McAuley College had four Year 9 representatives attend: Isabella Rossi, Mirabei Birtles, Grace Reading and Ruby McEvoy.

Over the three days we covered many things. Day 1 involved getting to know people and learning what social justice means in our community. Day 2 bought the workshops and the ‘Amazing Race’ around Beechworth exploring and finding ethical products. Day 3 involved making action plans for our schools and talking about ways we can go about this.

Many guest speakers were present, and we had different workshops we could attend on the six different topics which all linked back to the issue of Social Justice and this year’s theme of ‘100 percent’. The six workshops were Living Justly with Kerry Stone from Caritas Australia, The Cry of the Earth with Michael Crowe, Human Trafficking and Slavery with Joseph Dunn and Sr Heather from ACRATH (Australia Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans), Sustainable Food with Erin Varker a CMC trainee, Welcoming the Stranger with Christine Sebire who is a Pastoral Associate from Echuca and Babakiueria with Michael Chisholm, CEO Indigenous Education Office. All these presenters provided an amazing insight into their area of expertise. Erin Varker continued the tradition of a Catherine McAuley College staff member running a workshop.

Our Monday night session about using Social Media for Social Justice was presented by CMC past teacher Maria O’Donnell. She was very informative and helped us to see how we can use social media to gain awareness for a variety of causes that we are passionate about.

We feel privileged to have had the opportunity to attend and have been able to meet many like-minded students from around Sandhurst. It was truly inspiring and enlightening to hear people talk who are so passionate about their cause. This camp has given us many skills to bring back to our community and we look forward to sharing these in the coming months as we continue to build a social justice group within our school to drive projects. We would like to thank the organisers of the camp and our staff members Erin Varker and Nicole Cilauro as without them it would not have possible for us to attend.

Isabella Rossi