Com­mu­nity helps school to grow its healthy idea

Road­works to ad­dress com­mu­nity con­cerns

Wangaratta Chronicle - - Social Focus - BY SIMONE KERWIN

EVER­TON Pri­mary School is in the fi­nal throes of de­vel­op­ing its own kitchen.

Set to help the school’s 13 stu­dents utilise fresh pro­duce from their herb, fruit and veg­etable gar­den, the kitchen will also be a safer al­ter­na­tive to young­sters cross­ing the Great Alpine Road to use the town­ship’s CFA fa­cil­i­ties.

School coun­cil mem­ber Jackie Vet­ter said gen­er­ous do­na­tions from com­mu­nity mem­bers and lo­cal busi­nesses had helped the project take shape since Novem­ber last year.

It also ben­e­fited from fund­ing through the Grow Your Idea pro­gram, run by Gate­way Health us­ing funds from the Fed­eral De­part­ment of So­cial Ser­vices, re­ceiv­ing $3000 in the first round and $2000 from round two.

The lat­ter grant will be used to build stairs from the kitchen to the gar­den, and pur­chase fruit trees to add to fresh pro­duce grown at the school.

Ms Vet­ter said in­for­ma­tion pro­vided through Grow Your Idea had con­nected the school with the Vol­skills Bank, where lo­cals’ vol­un­teer ser­vices are matched with projects in need.

Vol­un­teer Joe Rosicka was putting the fin­ish­ing touches to the kitchen’s grout­ing last week, and said he had en­joyed be­ing part of the de­vel­op­ment.

“It’s a great chance to give some­thing back,” he said.

The new fa­cil­i­ties will help the school with its idea for ‘Fresh Pro­duce Fri­day’, where stu­dents will be in­vited to help make healthy lunches us­ing the food they have grown in their gar­den.

“We’ll get the kids in to make risotto cups and healthy wraps,” Ms Vet­ter said.

“We’d like to start that by term four, ready for sum­mer.”

There are also plans for the Ever­ton Lo­cal Food (or ELF) stand, lo­cated at the front of the school, where lo­cals and passers-by will be able to food swap and share their ex­cess pro­duce.

Ms Vet­ter said the kitchen and gar­den were a great ex- am­ple of the school’s ap­proach.

“In a ru­ral school, the kids are al­ways look­ing out for each other; no­body is left be­hind or left out,” she said.

“The kind of ex­pe­ri­ence you get in a small school is one you’ll never for­get, and the kids love the things they do and learn.”

SHOUL­DER con­struc­tion, pedes­trian cross­ing, in­ter­sec­tion up­grades and sig­nage re­views are some of the pro­posed works slated for Great Alpine Road in the next three to four years.

VicRoads re­cently held a com­mu­nity meet­ing in Bright and an­nounced where it would spend $8 mil­lion to up­grade the 156 kilo­mte­tre Wan­garat­taCobun­gra sec­tion of this ma­jor re­gional route.

VicRoads North Eastern re­gional di­rec­tor Nicki Kyr­i­akou said works sought to ad­dress con­cerns of sig­nage, cy­clist and pedes­trian safety and in­ter­sec­tion safety raised by 1200 res­i­dents in con­sul­ta­tion ses­sions ear­lier this year.

Pro­posed works may include new pedes­trian cross­ings in Bright, shoul­der con­struc­tion and seal­ing be­tween Wangaratta and Har­ri­etville, bar­rier in­stal­la­tion in high-risk ar­eas, a sig­nage re­view, and in­ter­sec­tion up­grades.

Ac­cord­ing to VicRoads, shoul­der con­struc­tion and seal­ing ap­pears to be the first pri­or­ity with works hope­fully com­menc­ing this sum­mer, but the or­gan­i­sa­tion has con­firmed the new shoul­ders will not be des­ig­nated bike lanes “as this (Great Alpine Road) is a 100km/h ru­ral ar­te­rial road”.

Myrtle­ford’s Stan­dish Street in­ter­sec­tion will be up­graded with the in­stal­la­tion of a round­about, while Snow Road, Ta­wonga Gap and other iden­ti­fied in­ter­sec­tions still re­quire fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

KITCHEN PRO­GRAM BUILD­ING: Ever­ton Pri­mary School stu­dents Jaimie Fitzger­ald, Emilise Al­lan, Bay­den Hey­wood and Rory Comey-Har­vey are look­ing for­ward to the com­ple­tion of their school kitchen. PHOTO: Emma Hil­lier

sker­win@ ne­me­

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