Learning Through Lunch goes regional.

When: 25 Jan 2021

Ardoch is now offering regional students the taste of success with our recent expansion of the Learning Through Lunch program into regional Victoria. Supported with funding from the Victorian Government as part of the ‘Raising Rural and Regional Student Aspirations’ program, Ardoch will be scaling these education support programs into seven regional communities over three years, partnering with 35 primary schools per year and supporting 3,300 students facing disadvantage. In 2020 the program was adapted to be Covid -safe to ensure children and young people experiencing disadvantage can continue to gain access to the program’s benefits.

The success of the launch can be demonstrated by this excerpt from a report by Linton Primary School student, Hunter, who wrote:

‘On the 23rd of November we had a very special visit from Tim Bone. Some of you may know him because he was on season 11 of Master Chef last year.

I would like to pay a massive respect to Ms Mitchell my teacher and Joe Reed the Ardoch coordinator for organising this event.

Tim Bone came to cook us a lovely lunch containing his specialty which was toasties. Before we had the delicious lunch Joe sat us down for a little talk, we watched two 7 minute videos one about someone called Bianca. She is a paramedic and she answered questions asked by people on the video. The same happened with Gabi, she is an engineer she answered questions asked by people on the video. We then talked about what we wanted to be when we grow up.

This was a very cool visit. I think a lot of people tried food outside of their comfort zone with the toasties and the salads. We really enjoyed this visit and are grateful for the delicious toasties.’

With COVID-19 disrupting children’s education and Ardoch’s ability to deliver using traditional face-to-face methods, both programs have adapted their models to ensure children and young people experiencing disadvantage can still access and benefit from these programs.

In the first of Ardoch’s regional programs in Ballarat, Learning Through Lunch was delivered  to the students in the classroom with Speed Careers offered as a virtual experience.

The Ardoch team were thrilled to partner with Ballarat local and MasterChef Australia Semi-Finalist, Tim Bone, to offer his delicious toasties and healthy salad options for the students. Tim also took part in a Q&A session with the students about MasterChef, food, what it means to realise your potential and how to achieve your goals.

This exciting launch of our Learning Through Lunch and Speed Careers programs into Ballarat looked a little different to what we had originally envisaged, however we are incredibly proud that we can still deliver an impactful experience for these primary school students.