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Fun at the farm for Indigenous kids

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For the third time this year a group of Nestlé employees went to Tamworth this week to run school holiday programs focusing on nutrition and fitness for more than 60 Indigenous children.

The highly successful Nestlé volunteer program, which has been operating for the past three years in Coonamble and Gulargambone in north-west NSW, has recently formed a partnership with the Tamworth Local Aboriginal Land Council. 

The 12 Nestlé volunteers have been actively fundraising for the past three months to run a variety of activities for the students aged between 5 and 12 years.

The visit by Nestlé employees is part of the company’s Aboriginal Youth Development Program to help make a contribution to close the gap in Australia between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities.

Ms Fiona Snape, Chief Executive Officer of the Tamworth Aboriginal Land Council, said before Nestlé youth programs came to Tamworth there was very little to keep kids occupied during the holidays.

She said the program was a great way for kids to remain active, and learn about good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle at the same time.

“The community is very excited about this event because it means the kids are not left idle, and they are in a safe environment enjoying new experiences,” she said.

“For some of the kids this will be the first time they’ve tried many of the activities.”

Ms Snape said the program had become so popular that they’ve unfortunately had to turn kids away because of limited spaces.

“We would love to have the opportunity to include more children and extend it to high school kids and maybe include some leadership skills,” she said.

During the week the students will spend time at Trelawney Farm, a working farm, immersing themselves in activities such as craft, sport, movies, healthy cooking - and plenty of fun.

Renee Enman, Manager Nestlé Indigenous Programs said the holiday program was not only proving beneficial to the children of Tamworth but also to the Nestlé volunteers.

“Our Nestlé volunteers love making a contribution to different communities as part of our Indigenous Program,” she said.

“It’s a rewarding time for everyone and it’s great to demonstrate that collaborating with communities and working together can bring positive outcomes.”