The Homework Hub at the Jarjum Centre in Lismore aims to keep Indigenous students engaged in education, through providing opportunities and resources to support an increased sense of belonging.
Previously, the centre only had one computer available for the children. Thanks to a NRCF Community Grant, the centre has purchased three laptops and software, providing the equipment and internet access needed to assist the Jarjums with researching school projects and completing homework tasks.
For most children who attend the Hub, this is their only access to a computer, printer and the internet. Having access to these resources and the support of Jarjum tutors, ultimately leads to the children feeling a sense of accomplishment and confidence when they attend school.
“Many of our children leave their early childhood education on par with their non-Indigenous peers through specialised programs and supports,” said Jarjum Director Maurita Cavanough.
“However, research has shown that a large majority of these children fall behind once again by the time they are in year two. If children do not receive support during these critical times, it is more likely that disengagement will increase by the time they reach high school,” she said.
“Our aim is to support Jarjums to stay engaged in school, and to participate with confidence. Many families in our context come from backgrounds of limited education. As children get older, homework can be difficult to assist with. Jarjum Centre provides transport, food, and access to resources to make this happen,” said Maurita.
The Homework hub was forced to close for a period due to the pandemic. However, they reopened at the end of July to a huge turnout. The Hub is currently running two sessions per week with 50 children involved with the program and demand is so high that the team are now looking to relocate to a larger space.