May 10, 2018
6 teenagers from Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School in the south west of WA, have been selected to tackle the Kokoda Track during July as part of their ‘Adventurous Journey’ component of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.
The participants and their accompanying volunteer supervisors have been selected along with students from Scotch College, as one of only six Award groups from around Australia to be funded to undertake the Kokoda Track throughout the year to learn more about the Australian and Kokoda history during WWII.
The group departs on 27 July and will have nine days in the mountains, completing memorial services at “Brigade Hill” and a dawn service at the Isurava Memorial. Each day involves hiking 7-10 hours per day, camping in local villages, visiting the small schools, and enjoying the company of the locals. Two nights in Port Moresby and a visit to the Bomara War Cemetery, where 3,000 servicemen are buried, will conclude the trip.
The students include Lily Roberts 16, Tessa Keane 16, Emily Anderson 16, Darcy Wilson 15, Brendan Peacock 16, and Patrick Reilly 16 . Travelling with them will be Steven and Leonie Sutherland and Award Leader, Leon Maag.
Peter Kaye AM, CEO of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award – Australia said “The Kokoda experience provided to Award participants each year continues to be very successful as it allows them the opportunity to experience a challenge that will develop strong team skills and push them to their limits, which they would otherwise not have had access to”.
Made possible by the major funding of The Flight Centre Foundation, the support takes the form of airfares, accommodation, and travel insurance. The Kokoda sponsorship has been generously funding participants and adult volunteers each year since 2012. The Flight Centre Foundation is fostering Flight Centre Limited’s long-standing relationship with The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award – Australia.
Award Leader, Leon Maag said “We are very excited and grateful for the opportunity that has been afforded to our students and it will be a life changing opportunity”.
National Chairman of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award – Australia, The Honourable Gary Nairn AO says, “We are delighted that The Flight Centre Foundation has chosen to continue their generous annual sponsorship of this initiative based on its success since 2012. Annually, we have over 40,000 young Australians of different socio-economic backgrounds, skills, ability and physical capacity participating in The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award; yet we still miss too many who are denied the personal development opportunity to complete the activities required to achieve an Award.”