Thirteen students and three staff members of Cooloola Christian College with their sister-school counterparts in the Solomon Islands.
Thirteen students and three staff members of Cooloola Christian College with their sister-school counterparts in the Solomon Islands. Contributed

Helping hand for Pacific Island

THIRTEEN Cooloola Christian College students recently returned from a mission to the Solomon Islands where they assembled 105 desks for their new sister school on Vella La Vella, an island of the Western Province.

The project put students’ (and three staff members’) woodwork skills to good use, fitting furniture together for three classrooms at the soon-to-be completed Maravari Primary School.

Students paid their own way to Vella La Vella and raised $15,000 in funds for the school by hosting a Mootoo feast and running many other fundraising activities here in Gympie.

The trip was part of a joint venture with World Hope Solomon Islands, the Recovery Action and Rehabilitation Project (RARP) and Cooloola Christian College.

RARP project manager John Boveington, who is based in Gizo on the Solomon Islands, said the students’ efforts had been well received by RARP and the local school board.

The new Maravari Primary School building, which is nearing completion, boasts eight classrooms, a staff room, library, office and toilets.

The desks are a standard design used in RARP’s 108 schools in Western and Choiseul Provinces.

Cooloola Christian College has been visiting schools and churches in the Western Province since 2006 and established a sister school relationship with Maravari in 2007.

CCC’s mission team leader Ross Waltisbuhl said the trip had been a good experience for the Gympie students.

“It has been very rewarding to visit our sister school and to be able to contribute in a practical way,” he said.

“Cooloola Christian College students worked hard alongside Maravari students to assemble and paint the desks, which were locally fabricated by a Gizo firm.”

While the group was at Vella La Vella, Mr Waltisbuhl wrote a news article about the trip, which was published in Solomon Island’s leading daily newspaper, the Solomon Star.

Gympie Times


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