There are five ways that schools can be involved, starting with a small commitment through MAD Day and building up to major change…
MAD Day: Students take on a one-day activity that gets everyone thinking about making a difference. For example, students might brainstorm the things they are most concerned about and think of a positive action they could take. Schools already implementing a MAD Project or MAD Foundation use a MAD Day to celebrate their achievements.
5/6 Dale at Cambridge Primary School learnt about the lives of Cambodian children, and that a simple bike could remove the obstacles to a child receiving an education. They decided to raise funds by creating a calendar of artworks depicting what their bikes meant to them, seeking sponsorship for printing and then selling copies to their school community. Students also devised an Awareness Day, presenting mini-lessons about Cambodia to the younger grades, and running a bike-a-thon, obstacle course and raffle. The class has now raised enough money to provide 20 schooling scholarships for Cambodian students – including bikes, uniforms and text books – through Child Wise.
Read more about Cambridge Primary’s ruMAD? experience.
MAD Project: Students work together on an agreed project. These require a longer-term commitment with more detailed research, planning and involvement. The project may be developed and implemented over a whole year or on an ongoing basis. Projects make a significant difference in the school or in the local or global community.
Riverside Primary’s ruMAD? team hosted a “Stayin’ Alive Past Five” dinner to support UNICEF’s work for child survival, raising funds for bed nets to prevent malaria. As with all good ruMAD? projects, students used the opportunity to connect with the wider school community, and for all to learn together: the seven student organisers involved their families in preparing the meal; borrowed a bain marie from the local golf club; and made presentations about the issue to their dinner guests – then quizzed them to make sure their messages had sunk in! The outcomes of their fantastic effort included enough funds raised to supply 71 bed nets.
Read more about Riverside Primary’s ruMAD? experience
MAD Youth Ambassador: The Fairer World Festival is the largest youth social justice event in Tasmania, inspiring students to be a driving force for change in their local and global communities, and offering teachers an opportunity to explore new ways to incorporate responsible citizenship programs into their classrooms. The Festival allows Tasmanian students to share their change-making ideas with community leaders, learn new skills, showcase their recent projects, and make contact with others working for a fairer world.
A Fairer World, in partnership with Oaktree, hosted the 2013 Festival over four days in September 2013 at University of Tasmania campuses in Hobart and Launceston. The Festival had 26 sponsors, the support of 20 organisations, and 27 volunteers. 74 workshops were delivered to 1,214 grade 3-12 students from fifty schools across the state. Akram Azimi, the 2013 Young Australian of the Year, was the keynote speaker, and his presentation provided an insight into his life in Australia as an “outsider”. Akram’s experience in diversity education made him a valuable contributor in the Global Café sessions for teachers.
Read more about the Festival and being a Youth Ambassador.
MAD Student Foundation: Students commit to raising funds and granting monies to community organisations within their local communities and ensure that their money is truly making a difference.
Melbourne Girls’ College established the first MAD Student Foundation in Victoria in 2001. The girls raised $2,500 through sausage sizzles and other events. These funds were matched by Charles Lane and The Myer Foundation. By 2003, the Foundation had developed such a profile that the school was inundated with community applications for funding. (Foundations have not yet been introduced to Tasmania.)
ruMAD? & Service Clubs: An extension to the MAD Project, for which a Service Club partners with an ruMAD? class to explore the enterprising and life skills used by the students in developing their project.