Buddy Bench provides a haven from bullies at Hilton Primary

Year 6 students Chloe Maynard, Danielle Williams, Elaine Quinlan, school chaplain Nathan Hoyle and Amiee Gale with Athie Chambers from Bunnings. Picture: Matt Jelonek        www.communitypix.com.au   d447157
Year 6 students Chloe Maynard, Danielle Williams, Elaine Quinlan, school chaplain Nathan Hoyle and Amiee Gale with Athie Chambers from Bunnings. Picture: Matt Jelonek        www.communitypix.com.au d447157

NOBODY likes being bullied or feeling left out, especially as a young schoolchild.

Students at Hilton Primary School will be looking to help others who are feeling excluded after a Buddy Bench was donated and installed at the school with the help of Bunnings O’Connor.

Children are encouraged to sit on the Buddy Bench when they are feeling left out or bullied and classmates are urged to invite them to play, walk or talk with them.

School chaplain Nathan Hoyle said the Buddy Bench would be a key area for their team of 13 playground mediators, dubbed Moorditj Mates, who work to encourage positive relationships at the school.

“The Moorditj Mates have volunteered their own time at lunch and recess to be on duty to help students solve small problems, particularly around friendship disputes,” he said.

“The team will be keeping an eye on the Buddy Bench on their regular lunchtime and recess duty, helping students at the bench identify possible playmates from their year-group and thinking about ways they can join in an existing game.”

For their part, Bunnings Warehouse O’Connor complex manager Louise Pitman said the team were very pleased to help with hands-on projects such as the Buddy Bench campaign.