Newcastle Ignition Mentoring Program ends with a bang
The fifth Newcastle Ignition Mentoring Program had a successful year and finished off with the graduation dinner on Tuesday 8 November. It was a special night with several of the mentees writing and presenting poems and speeches. One mentee sang while the room watched a slide show of the photos from the year. Thanks to the support of the Greater Charitable Foundation, the 22 mentees and mentors spent the past eight months meeting fortnightly under the guidance of Cerebral Palsy Alliance Facilitator Meredith Hudson.
The program wouldn’t run without key supporters, the biggest being the Greater Charitable Foundation. A big thank you to the Foundations for making it happen.
We would also like to thank Parent Facilitator Angela Tiedeman, the parents who drop their children off every fortnight without fail, guest speakers Daniel Mullen and Georgia Beikoff, the Belmont 16 foot Sailing Club who waived the room hire, Sid Fogg Coaches, Great Sydney Race, Arrive First Class, Balloon Boutique at Charlestown, Battle Zone Play Live, and the Oasis Salvos centre.
To celebrate the Newcastle Ignition Mentoring achievements we have a poem and speech delivered by mentees at the graduation event to share with you:
“I never imagined myself being in this room with people with whom I can be just myself.
Ignition was a great surprise, a lovely gift every two weeks.
Love, friendship and food. We came together and found new things and new ways.
Laughter and smiles, I can see in your faces.
I always felt I didn’t belong until I met you all.
I made new friends here and they helped me to find out about myself and how to live.
And I hope we will always be in touch.
Thank you to Meredith and Cerebral Palsy Alliance, to the Greater Charitable Foundation and to our great mentors.” – Mani Alexander, 16, graduating mentee for 2016.
“I would first like to thank the Greater Charitable Foundation for giving us this amazing opportunity. Thank you to all our mentors that have given up their time to come to our sessions and also a huge thank you to Meredith and Cerebral Palsy Alliance for making it all possible.
This year we have experienced some amazing things, made some great new friends and have also learned a lot about ourselves.
We have done activities like laser tag at Maitland gaol, have had an awesome overnight trip to Sydney staying at the Meriton Apartments. During this trip we went to Centre-Point Tower for the sky walk, we saw the Vivid light show from the water, we saw all our favourite celebrities at Madame Tussauds and we did the amazing great race through Sydney. We have also had a hummer ride through Newcastle and a games night which was heaps of fun and lots of laughs.
We also did our usual sessions where we have learnt a lot about ourselves, our goals and each other. We had a few special guests visit us during our sessions, they spoke about believing in ourselves and achieving our goals. Every session we had was full of laughter and inside jokes. Our sessions were always full of food too, Meredith thank you for always overfeeding us with lollies and chocolates. Every second week on Tuesdays we would go home hyper because of the sugar overload. But best of all we have made some great new friends, not only in the other mentees but also in the mentors.
It’s been a great year and sadly it has come to an end, however, I know that we will all continue to be friends.
Thank you again to all that have given us this amazing opportunity that we’ll never forget.”
-Read by Ignition Mentoring Newcastle participants Katelyn and Brayden Snape.
For more information about the programs we offer, contact your local Cerebral Palsy Alliance centre.