KINDNESS and compassion are traits held in high regard in our society, and 12-yearold Isabella Cooper has received an award for demonstrating both.
The Glenora District School student was one of 33 Tasmanian students from 22 schools to receive the Fred Hollows Humanity Award for their humanitarian spirit.
The award was presented by the secretary for the Department of Education, Jenny Gale, at Parliament House in Hobart last month.
Glenora District School vice-principal Laura Hansen nominated Isabella for the award.
“Isabella demonstrates maturity beyond her years as a young learner and is always reaching out to support others,” Ms Hansen said.
Isabella said she was thrilled but surprised to find out she had been nominated for the award and it made her feel good.
“Sometimes people are struggling with things we don’t know about, so just being there and asking is important,” she said.
“If someone needs help I just help them, not for myself, I just do it.”
Isabella is on the student representative council and has been a leader in implementing the school’s “buddy” seat.
“It’s for kids that, if they need to talk to someone, or they don’t have anyone to play with,” she said.
“If kids are feeling sad or lonely or they need someone to talk to, they can just sit on the bench and then one of us comes up and has a little chat to them.”
“Fred would have been incredibly proud of the contribution these students are making to society,” Fred Hollows Foundation founding director Gabi Hollows said.
Premier Will Hodgman said the award celebrated the humanitarian spirit of young Tasmanians who quietly go about their lives showing care, compassion and support for those around them.
“They are human traits often overlooked but just as important as other achievements,” Mr Hodgman said.