Feature Post

Travelling Boat Project

Date: January 2, 2017 Author: Fred Vanderwerf Categories: Feature Post, Special Programs, Student Leaders 1



On Monday 12th December 2016 Birmingham Primary School (BPS) launched a very exciting project.

About 3 years ago BPS joined local schools in the area (such as St Mary’s, Mt Evelyn Primary and Yarra Hills Secondary) in the Bully Stoppers Project.

This allowed Grade 6 student leaders to come together each year at a student led anti-bullying forum to explore ideas of how to become BULLY FREE both in our community and in our schools.

The Project is also known as the ‘Travelling Boat Project’. The Travelling Boat was made by a local artist in partnership with St Mary’s Primary School and is made from materials that represent students’ feelings associated with bullying and the boat is a symbol for breaking free from bullying.

Each school involved in the project was encouraged to take the skills they had learnt at the forum back to their school in order to make a difference to bullying behaviour. The students were asked to develop an idea (with a boat theme) to promote friendship and reduce bullying in the playground. The boat would then (together with a journal) travel to the school when the project is launched as a reminder of the work and commitment students have put towards combating bullying. That’s why it is currently on display at Birmingham.

The project also ties in beautifully with BPS’s journey to becoming an eSmart School, an initiative of the Alannah and Madeline Foundation. BPS attained eSmart status in November and is committed to improve cyber safety, reduce cyber bullying and bullying.

Our school captains Liam and Alannah came up with the idea of having a ‘Buddy Boat’ at Birmingham…and after a lot of planning, designing, construction and painting, last Monday our Princiapl Mrs Enzinger together with the student leaders who attended the forum in June), officially launched our new ‘Buddy Boat’.

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The ‘boat’ is called S.S. Friendship is located in a beautiful and peaceful garden area. It has been designed by both Mrs Hughes (Art Teacher) and Mr McDonald (Maintenance Officer) and was hand made by Mr McDonald whose incredible workmanship and attention to detail has exceeded our expectations. The buddy boat is a place to sit when you don’t have anyone to play with, or you are looking for someone to play with. It is also there to make you feel safe. Rostered ‘Buddy Boat Buddies’ will be there to help students and talk through any issues.

The 2016 student leaders are very proud to be part of this project and hope it will help students to take charge when it comes to friendship issues in the playground.



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After assembly Mrs Enzinger, Mr Vander Werf, Mrs Bellamy and the student leaders to came down to the ‘Buddy Boat’ for the cutting of the ribbon and official launch of Birmingham Primary School’s ‘Buddy Boat’ Project.


1 Comments: "Travelling Boat Project"

  1. Published by: Brett Williams Date: April 23, 2017


    Hugely important topic and well done on a great approach to addressing it. As a parent of 2 pre-school age kids it is comforting to see the commitment to stamping out this horribly damaging behaviour.

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