Life Changing Lessons

Respect. Integrity. Positive relationships. Resilience. At Graeme Dingle Foundation Marlborough, they’re more than just words, they’re life-changing lessons. Kiwi Can is the transformational programme reaching nearly 60% of Marlborough children every week during their years at primary school. This action-packed programme, run by the Graeme Dingle Foundation Marlborough, teaches important values like resilience, integrity, positive relationships, and respect.

So how is it helping our children, and families, with health and wellbeing?
 Kiwi Can – Kids’ Perspective 
• “I have been going to Kiwi Can lessons for nearly half my life, so you could say I know a lot about it. Kiwi Can teaches us all sorts of things that help us lead better lives. Every term we learn new ideas about things like integrity or resilience…” (Caius, Kiwi Can student, Whitney Street School)
• “I feel good about having Kiwi Can to help me make good choices in my life” (Jack, Kiwi Can student, Riverlands School)
• “I have learnt things from Kiwi Can that will stay with me for life. They are very important things that I think everyone needs to learn. Like resilience. Kiwi Can has taught me to not give up, even when things get tough” (Ashelyn, Kiwi Can student, Havelock School)
• “My life is different now because Kiwi Can has taught me how to be a leader, how to respect and support others, as well as caring about my own feelings” (Emily, Kiwi Can student, Riverlands School)

Kiwi Can – A Parent’s Story
• “I myself have learned so much from the kids through Kiwi Can and we also apply it at home (encourage and support them) – and it sure does help me too. They both come across challenges, so we talk about ‘resilience’ & that changes everything because they know what it’s about. Not to mention all the other great stuff Kiwi Can is doing. I was stoked when my daughter (then 5) told me what the word ‘integrity’ meant. I was blown away. Keep up the great work to you all. It sure makes a big difference to every school involved” (Susana, Kiwi Can parent).

• “My boys were delighted to be able to see their Kiwi Can instructors during lockdown and it was fun for us all to try the activities.” (Kiwi Can parent).

• “Thanks for the online Kiwi Can lessons [during COVID-19 lockdown]… my daughter loves her Kiwi Can time!” (Kiwi Can parent).

• “[Kiwi Can] has been an amazing opportunity, particularly for my more anxious child, to develop trusting relationships with other adults. My children will recognise in themselves if their behaviour is beginning to stray and we will talk about what their Kiwi Can leaders would say, which helps them to consider and reset in a more positive direction – it is fantastic!” (Heather, Kiwi Can parent).

Kiwi Can – A Principal’s Reflection

• “Kiwi Can’s values-based education programme is especially important during these unprecedented times. The message of resilience, positive relationships and respect are more important than ever for our learners.” (Aaron Vercoe, Principal, Redwoodtown School).

From small acorns – mighty oaks grow

Today’s fast-paced change impacts on many levels within society; from education to employment, from communication to recreation. Our children need to learn skills and strategies to develop into resilient people who can cope and thrive amongst this ongoing evolution and disruption. They need to learn how to work together, understand other perspectives, collaborate for mutual success, and how to bounce back from setbacks.

The Kiwi Can programme supports the development of these skills and values, so our young people are able to overcome the challenges they will inevitably face in life. We want to empower every Marlborough child to overcome the obstacles life will inevitably throw at them. Kiwi Can is helping Marlborough’s “small acorns” grow into the most “mighty oaks” possible.

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