9 March 2017
Nikita Comans in year 11 and Jorja Laffan in year 7 (a former St Patrick's Primary student) were among five local recipients of the Edward “Weary” Dunlop You’ve Got What It Takes Award. The award is offered to students in the Euroa electorate who have displayed persistence and resilience during times of adversity, qualities associated with this World War II hero.
The awards were presented to the children at Parliament House last month.They and their families were special guests of Member for Euroa and deputy leader of the Nationals, Steph Ryan. They were treated to a special day that included the official presentation ceremony, a tour of Parliament House, a luncheon and a screening at Imax.
Nikita was surprised by the honour and described herself as “grateful” to be considered to have the same characteristics as someone like Weary Dunlop.
“It was such an honour and a really great day. I cannot thank Ms Ryan enough for the care she showed us hosting us all... She gave us so much of her time and Parliament House was just amazing, and it was a day I will never forget,”
Nikita thanked her mother and the ACK community, especially her Learning Mentor Vicky Southgate.
“Mum has been a huge part of it all as she has set the example for me to always be positive and never give up,” Nikita said.
Jorja was also surprised and honoured to be nominated for the award. She was commended for showing compassion and empathy to others and displaying great resilience and persistence with her schooling.
“The whole day was so cool. Parliament House was just great and going to Imax to see Under the Sea was great too. I was really surprised and honoured to get the award and want to thank my whole family because they have taught me to stay positive in any situation and that there is always something brighter ahead,” Jorja said.
“Receiving this award encourages me to keep being myself and keep persisting and be resilient.”
Ms Ryan said: "I feel extremely fortunate to be able to meet so many exceptional young people ... I have no doubt each has a very bright future and I look forward to following their journeys over the coming years.”