QI of Coolum Beach, Queensland, Australia

  • April 15, 2013

QI of Coolum Beach, Queensland, Australia

QI of Coolum Beach, Queensland, Australia

Our Quota Cares Month project
Our project this year was a Mini-Makeover of the Coolum State High School Chaplain’s office. It came about because two of our members were helping Chaplain Mark clean up after a weekly pancake breakfast at the school – we help once a month and also fund purchase of the ingredients, so that students get something to eat before school. The ladies felt Mark’s rooms were not welcoming to the students, teachers and others who come to him for help, and decided a “mini-makeover” was needed. Easily convinced, our members rallied. One sourced stools made from milk crates and donated by a nearby cafe, another sourced a couch at a charity shop, a third provided carpet, and we bought shelves, bright new utensils and other accessories. Over three days we cleaned, painted, replaced storage shelves, carpeted, redecorated and restocked the rooms. The result is cheerful and welcoming for Mark’s visitors – not only students and teachers at the school but also parents who seek help dealing with stresses and problems. The school has more than 700 students from a large catchment, and around 60 teachers plus ancillary staff. The chaplain counsels at-risk students and those with behavioural problems, and runs a mentoring program, so his time is stretched. Our contribution made his work easier and the atmosphere more relaxed and welcoming. Thus, our project touches the everyday world of a large proportion of the Coolum Beach community, and beyond.

How did our QCM project benefit our community?
Our project was publicised in local newspapers with “teasers” – hints as to our plans – in the weeks before it happened, a fuller description the week we did the work, and a story with a photo after completion. It has raised awareness of Quota’s activities at the school, within the school community and thus in the wider Coolum community. It complements the assistance, physical and financial, that we give the chaplain for his breakfast program. We have been in discussion with the school about establishing a JQ club there, and this project has shown the students that we are willing to make the effort to help them, so we look forward to a stronger link between Quota of Coolum Beach and the school in the future. Further afield, the cafe whose owners gave us the stools has offered us a platform to get our presence known in another nearby community. The project only came together in late March, so we haven\’t seen membership results yet, but regular publicity in our weekly local papers brought us five new members recently, so we are confident we’ll attract more soon.

How did our QCM project benefit our club / members?
This project had a galvanising effect on our Club. The two members who conceived it brought the idea to a “combined committees” meeting fortuitously held on the same day, so more than half of our Club members were involved from the start, and the enthusiasm was infectious, so that everyone contributed when and where they could. Ideas flew thick and fast as to what was possible, especially given tight time and space constraints – the rooms are tiny, and the work could only be done during the Easter school holidays. We debated shelving, furnishing and flooring options, and there was continual contact between members as ideas gelled. The team that did the actual work was by necessity small, due to space and time limits, but included several of our talented “Quotations” (as we call our spouses) who did the heavy work – installing shelves and carpets. Morale within the Club was high the whole month as we planned and executed this challenge, and we all had big grins on our faces when the job was done. Amazingly, everything coordinated – the donated couch is reddish with yellow motifs, the walls are yellow and the carpet has reddish flecks, the covers on the stools have blue and red artwork, and the new crockery and towels are bright red/white and blue/white, so it all looks cheerful and the feeling is cheerful too!

Want more information about this project? Contact staff@quota.org

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