The Newman program began in 2015 and is run with Newman Senior High School and managed locally by a co-ordinator from The Polly Farmer Foundation’s Follow the Dream after-school program.

Mentors from St Catherine’s College and the college’s Dandjoo Darbalung program, visit Newman  twice a year, spending time in the classroom with students from Years 6 to 10, and engaging with students and the community after school, including playing basketball and joining in a community barbeque. During their time in Newman, mentors talk to students about living away from home, course options, university and TAFE pathways, residential options and scholarship opportunities, in the process providing positive role models to indigenous and non-indigenous students.

“Once we built up the relationships with students, I found there were lots of questions I could answer and conversation flowed well. I felt they talked to us in a way they couldn’t talk to other people around them like teachers. It was like we were a middle ground that offered a space for the students to express what they normally wouldn’t, and then we could help explore those ideas.”- Sarah Bellottie, Mentor, Newman and Hedland