Bunbury students embrace South African cultural experience

Mrs Belinda Walker, Megan Fowler (Year 11), Declan Rosher (Year 10), Lochlann Owen-Tucker (Year 11), Tharushi Pallegedara (Year 11) and Georgia Uren (Year 11).
Mrs Belinda Walker, Megan Fowler (Year 11), Declan Rosher (Year 10), Lochlann Owen-Tucker (Year 11), Tharushi Pallegedara (Year 11) and Georgia Uren (Year 11).

Five Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School (BCGS) students had the opportunity to represent Australia at the Round Square International Conference in Cape Town, South Africa during the school holidays.

The conference theme was to ‘unite to ignite the fire within’ which aimed to embrace diversity and ignite global change.

BCGS Round Square co-ordinator Belinda Walker said the conferences are hosted in a different country every year, with BCGS regular attendees.

“It is a fabulous arena for meeting staff and students from some of the 160 schools, swapping best practice ideas, enjoying guest speakers and activities in various host countries,” Mrs Walker said.

“Students have the opportunity to meet like-minded students from all over the world, working with them to solve problems and discuss world issues.

“They get to explore different cultures and gain an understanding of some of the issues that different students face in their country and schools.

“The conference was well run and the students enjoyed an Amazing Race around Cape Town, hiking Table Mountain and some service in local schools.”

A number of inspirational speakers presented at the conference, including Caleb Swanepoel, a young 22-year-old who lost his leg to a great white shark two years ago, and Dr William Fowlds, a Veterinary surgeon dedicated to saving rhinoceroses from poaching.

The conference was held at the Cape Town International Conference Centre with the entire delegation being shared between three Round Square schools. BCGS was hosted by St George’s Grammar School in Cape Town.

Year 11 student Georgia Uren said the experiences were genuinely life changing.

“The new friends we have made have shown us different perspectives on the world,” Ms Uren said.

BCGS also participated in a pre-conference safari tour at the Tuli Wilderness Park in Botswana with 75 other participants from carious schools and countries.

“We saw some amazing wildlife up close and personal and all made some great friendships along the way,” Mrs Walker said.

Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School is a global member of the Round Square organisation. Round Square is founded on the philosophy that a student’s education is much more than what occurs in the classroom, but also encompasses life experiences and opportunities.