Lucy Bennett says she has always been a firm believer in making a difference in the world.
As a Year 5 teacher and a key person in the delivery of the Girls with Grit signature program, Lucy wants every student to know that little acts of kindness can make a difference.
“It’s been part of my upbringing and the way that I was raised”, says Lucy.
“The experiences I’ve been through with my family were a huge wake-up call eight years ago (Lucy’s sister lost her battle to brain cancer), and I didn’t want it to be about me, I wanted it to be about raising awareness.”
“Being an IB PYP school, we’re all about taking action – so if we can drive that through the Junior Primary students at a young age, well, they can be moulded for life.”
Lucy’s drive to make a difference has seen the Junior School raise funds and awareness on a huge scale. Earlier this year, the Year 5 Girls with Grit students topped the ACT fundraising ranks in Jump Rope for Heart and just last week, Lucy received a video from Mark Hughes, thanking the School for their participation in the Beanies for Brain Cancer campaign.
“In an environment like Canberra Girls Grammar where, in general, the girls are quite fortunate, they don’t make it about themselves – they are able to step back and reflect on how their actions can make a difference in the community.”
Lily Maljkovic (Year 6) says, “I feel really good and fortunate, that my family members and myself could [donate money] because I know that many people can’t.”
Through her participation in Jump Rope for Heart, Year 5 student Zafira Konstantinou learnt that the generosity of many people, even small donations can make a real difference. She was the top fundraiser in this year’s Jump Rope for Heart effort, where all Year 5 students did their bit to try and combat heart disease.
“I know a few people who have heart disease, so I know this will help them.”
Lucy’s next project will put her crocheting skills to the test! The Year 5 students have been learning to crochet as part of their mindfulness activities and they will collectively create a blanket, which will be donated to Wrap with Love.
“Amidst their busy lives, they can just hone in and being at peace but knowing at the same time they are making a difference to the homeless.”
“We have chats in the Girls with Grit program, we do weekly reflections on all their activities and invite them to reflect in their journals. It opens up that rich, lively discussion and dialogue on what they’ve gained from the experiences.”
Lucy also oversees the work of the Publicity Committee in the Junior School, and through talking with the students, it’s obvious they look up to her as a role model – kindness inspires kindness.
Megan Smith (Year 6) says, “She’s really kind and optimistic. She’s never harsh, or rude to us if we forget to do something.”
Madeline Beesley (Year 6) agrees - “Mrs Bennett never leaves anyone out, she always has a job for everyone. She always helps us with everything that we do on the [publicity] committee. I like having Mrs Bennett as our committee teacher.”
“I do what I do to instill our Anglican values within our girls whilst they are still young so that we can shape them into being empowered women of the future.”
Photo above: Lucy Bennett with some members of the Publicity Committee