Resilience Project heading for Ararat

Excitement is buzzing in Ararat following the launch of The Resilience Project yesterday morning. 

Local teachers, students and community leaders gathered at the offices of Central Grampians Local Learning and Employment Network (CGLLEN) where it was announced that the renowned mental health and wellbeing program would visit Ararat in February 2020. 

The Resilience Project delivers emotionally engaging programs to schools, sports clubs and businesses, providing practical, evidence-based, positive mental health strategies to build resilience and happiness. 

The initiative has been implemented in more than 500 schools around the country and worked with many elite sporting teams including NRL and AFL clubs and the Australian cricket squad. 

CGLLEN Executive Officer, Jessica Paterson, said the launch was designed to kick start a mental health and wellbeing movement in Ararat. 

“Next year, The Resilience Project will be facilitating workshops with local teachers and school children and holding a community session which will be open to all members of the public,” she said. 

“Ten of our local schools have been working hard on this for a number of years now and they are extremely excited to be bringing this amazing program to Ararat. Our main goal is to ensure that once the Resilience Project leaves, we continue to build on the skills they’ve taught us. 

“We don’t want this to be a one-off event. We want resilience, happiness and mental wellbeing to become a way of life for the people in our community.” 

The organising committee is hoping to replicate the results achieved by the community of St Arnaud following its visit from The Resilience Project in 2018. 

St Arnaud Primary School Principal Melissa Mitchell said the program was encouraging young people in the town to aim high. 

“We came across The Resilience Project after identifying the need to raise the aspirations of local students,” she said. 

“We knew that to achieve this, we had to build a solid foundation of resilience that would support them in coping with setbacks and failure. That’s where the conversation started around brining The Resilience Project to St Arnaud.” 

In addition to working with staff and students, Mrs Mitchell said St Arnaud was able to engage the entire community in the program. 

“Our thinking behind this was that we wanted to develop a common language – a shared starting point and an understanding of purpose behind engaging The Resilience Project across the whole community,” she said. 

“Our community forum was attended by over 300 people, far exceeding our hopes to get around 100 people there. Feedback following the session was glowing – people rang and emailed the schools and Facebook was full of very positive comments. 

“Excellent conversations are had now, and student input is great. It has definitely been an excellent addition to our programs.” 

Ticketing information for The Resilience Program in Ararat is set to be released early next year. For more information visit @ResilientArarat on Facebook and Instagram.  

PHOTO:  L-R CGLLEN Executive Officer Jessica Paterson, Bree and Jack (Ararat College), Phoebe (Ararat 800 Primary School), Ararat 800 Primary School Principal Ryan Oliver, Jack (Ararat 800 Primary School) and Ararat College Acting Principal Ellie McDougall at Tuesday’s launch.