Fiona Barrett from Red Inc and students from Lismore South Public School start work on building a Buddy Bench. From left, Declan Martin, 9, James Stewart, 11, Khan Muldoon, 11, and Samuel Davis, 9.
Fiona Barrett from Red Inc and students from Lismore South Public School start work on building a Buddy Bench. From left, Declan Martin, 9, James Stewart, 11, Khan Muldoon, 11, and Samuel Davis, 9. Cathy Adams

Bench to help kids find buddies at Sth Lismore school

A BUDDY Bench is set to help lonely kids make new friends at Lismore South Public School.

School staff, including colleague and Red Inc In-School Support Program coordinator Fiona Barrett, had heard of the bench, used in schools nationwide and worldwide, and thought it would make a great addition to the school's playground area.

"We sometimes see kids sitting in the playground by themselves, wandering alone, and we thought it would be a great idea so the other kids know to include that child," Ms Barrett said.

She and students are building the bench today.

School captain, 11-year-old James Stewart, said he was looking forward to helping build the bench.

 

"A buddy bench will be good to have in the school so the kids who are new don't feel left out," James said.

"The other kids in the area will see them, come over and introduce themselves, sit, talk, and then they'll go play with each other."

James said there were a few rules for using the bench, and he would explain them to the junior kids.

"It's not just a place for you to sit down and talk with your friends, it's a place for you to make friends," he said.

"I'll also be explaining not to break the bench and to respect it."

Before heading straight to the bench, kids will be encouraged to approach someone in the playground first and, with a smile, ask them if they want to play.

The Buddy Bench idea was conceived by a boy in the US and with the help of his school, word spread around the world.

For more information about the idea, visit www.buddybench.org



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