Published on: 30 January 2015

Christ Church again hosted the Sony Foundation Children’s Holiday Camp in December – giving 2014 graduates from Christ Church and Methodist Ladies’ College (MLC) an opportunity to care for a child with special needs.

As the smaller cohort, Year 11 boys were also invited to be student assistants on the three-day camp, which treated 20 children to a weekend of fun activities while providing parents, siblings and primary carers with some much needed respite.

The 39 student companions and assistants quickly learnt about the challenges and demands involved in caring for a child with special needs during the intensive, 60-hour experience but were ably supported by a big team of volunteer staff from both schools.

Director of Activities Neil Saggers said the 2014 camp, which was co-ordinated by outgoing Director of the Residential Community Geoff Guggenheimer, was a great success.

Highlights of the program included a beach session with the WA Disabled Surfing Association; bowls and a barbecue dinner at the Claremont Bowls Club; and the final Christmas lunch with the children’s parents, a visit from Father Christmas (played by School Chaplain Frank Sheehan) and a hamper for each family. Other activities included pool games, a disco and karaoke night, a fire truck visit, magic tricks as well as music, art and science activities.

Mr Saggers said the camp would not be possible without former Preparatory Peter Moyes Centre Co-ordinator Lisa Broxton, Clinical Nurse Manager Joanna Simpson and her nursing team, and the teachers and staff who volunteered their time.

Each year, Christ Church seeks applications from families at various special needs schools and centres across Perth, targeting those in most need of respite. It is the eighth year the School has run the camp.