Socktober’s great feat of fundraising

By Wendy Shaw

Tasmanian Catholic school students have put their best feet forward in raising money and awareness for Socktober.

The Catholic Mission program has inspired students to don novelty leg coverings and hold soccer-themed events, while learning about the challenges of poverty in countries such as Ethiopia and creating prayers of gratitude.

St Joseph’s Catholic schools at Queenstown and Rosebery, on the West Coast, were also involved in designing colourful posters and artworks, the importance of caring for the environment and making soccer balls from socks.

Principal Carmen Aylott said that as well as in-class activities, the student representative councils organised the crazy sock days.

“Our aim is to provide opportunities for our students to understand the needs of others such as those in developing countries like Ethiopia,” she said.

“It is important that our students understand the purpose of Socktober, and then learn about how others experience poverty and the challenges other people face on a daily basis.

“Students also learn that it’s important to look after our environment and that we can give thanks through prayer. We also look at how we can raise money for those less privileged than us.”

Fantastic feet: Students from St Joseph’s Catholic School at Queenstown support Socktober. Photo: Supplied

Deacon Michael Hangan is the Archdiocesan Director for Catholic Mission and is based in Moonah.

He said that the impact of Socktober on students and their families is “deep and multi-faceted” through learning about the communities they are supporting, setting goals and taking action, and developing leadership skills with fundraising initiatives.

“It leaves a lasting impact on the students, who not only remember who and what it was they raised funds for, but critically why they were raising funds,” Deacon Hangan said.

“The strong soccer theme of the program, and the invitation to make sock balls, further enhances that understanding of the reality of children we are supporting in a ‘haves and have nots’ sense.”

Deacon Hangan added that Catholic Mission was encouraged by the continued growth of Socktober across Australia and welcomed the engagement of Catholic Education Tasmania and the state’s participating schools including: St Aloysius Catholic College, Kingston and Huntingfield; St Thomas More’s Catholic School, Newstead; St Patrick’s College, Launceston; St Therese’s Catholic School, Moonah; both St Joseph’s on the West Coast; and Our Lady of Mercy, Deloraine.

Some 473 schools across Australia registered to take part in Socktober this year and they have so far helped to raise more than $88,000.

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