Students Visit Girls in Youth Detention Centre
We loved hearing that three Year 10 students, Naomi, Jade and Sarai volunteered with Carey Right Track Foundation late last year and visited girls in Banksia Hill Detention Centre.
The students are all part of the Carey Church Basketball Club and they visited the Centre with their team and coaches to play basketball and hang out with the young women in Banksia.
We asked the students about their visit and what they learned through this experience. It was great to hear how they responded with openness and kindness. You can read their reflections below:
What did you do and why?
“A bunch of the Carey Boomers U15 Girls went down to Banksia Hill Detention Centre to visit the girls there. There were about six of us in there, as well as our coaches and one of the mums.
We went to Banksia and introduced ourselves to the girls, played a get-to-know-you game, and then played basketball for a bit. Interacting with the girls and just chilling out. Afterwards, we had lunch with the girls and started getting to know some of them well.
We concluded our visit by going to a little cafe run at the centre for girls to learn how to be baristas and serve the staff coffee and other drinks. We got some drinks and had some of the best conversations, learning about each other and really finding out that some of these girls were not what we expected.
How did it go?
It went really well. I absolutely loved it! The Banksia girls are separated into two groups. The ones who have only been there for a few weeks and the ones who’ve been there for a while. These girls are much more settled and get more privileges, such as working at the cafe.
It’s important for people to know that everyone makes mistakes. And that these girls are not in there because they are hardened criminals bent on doing the wrong thing, but they are actually a lot like everyone else. They’ve made mistakes and are hurting and regret their mistakes.
I really felt like I connected with three girls there specifically. They were so kind and sweet, funny and smart. I think they should be treated equally to the rest of us, and many more people should visit these girls and show them that they are worth a second chance.
What did you learn?
I learned that the girls are just like you and I. They are amazing and they will continue to show that as you get to know them. We all have bumps and imperfections along the way, but some of these girls just need a friend and a second chance.”
– Naomi Scott | Year 10 student
“A few days before Christmas, our Carey Church basketball team visited Banksia Hill Detention Centre to play basketball.
We emptied our pockets, passed over our phones, and passed through the security and razor wire. Not knowing what the inside of a detention centre would look like, we were pleased to see it looked a bit like a school rather than a prison you might see on TV.
We were a bit shy when first meeting the girls, but after quick introductions and a fun game of basketball, the conversation was easy. We talked about our interests in foods, holiday locations and sports.
The Banksia Hill girls were happy to answer the Carey girls’ questions about what life inside the prison was like, their schooling, their rooms, meals, and activities and what it is like not having a mobile phone.
The experience taught me that actions and choices can change your life. However, there is always hope and opportunity to put it back on the right track.”
– Jade Omacini | Year 10 student