Recently, Ms Joanna Walden, a Textiles teacher at Swan, took the handsewn hearts made by her Year 9 students to Ronald McDonald House during the school holidays and ran an art workshop for the children staying there. Ms Walden was inspired to create the 1000 Hearts project after initiating the Uthando Doll project with her classes and volunteering at Ronald McDonald House and seeing the difference that students’ work could make to the children’s lives. The Uthando Doll project involved students and teachers making dolls that were given to orphaned children because of the AID pandemic in KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.
The hearts were lovingly handmade by the students during Term 1 and were a reminder of the power of Service Learning. Ms Walden was delighted to be able to share the experience with her students, who were inspired to create something that would make a difference in the lives of the children at Ronald McDonald House.
The children at Ronald McDonald House are undergoing intensive treatment for serious illnesses and stay for anything from a few days to two weeks for respite. Ms Walden was moved to see the smiles on the children’s faces when they received the handmade hearts and was grateful for the opportunity to bring a little bit of joy to those in need.
The 1000 Hearts project is a reminder of the importance of giving back to the community and of using our talents to make a difference in the lives of others.