Nancy’s new niche

Balaklava and Port Wakefield Primary Schools welcomed a friendly new face last week.

Balaklava’s Nancy Gates began her new role as Pastoral Care Worker (PCW), visiting Balaklava Primary on Tuesdays and Fridays and Port Wakefield Primary on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Nancy has always had an interest in pastoral care, however for one reason or another hadn’t had the opportunity to become involved.

“It just never seemed to be the right time,” she said.

After home schooling her own four children, and then being involved in various community services, the PCW position became available and everything fell into place.

“It’s been very interesting so far and I’m enjoying the engagement with both students and staff,” Nancy said.

Nancy hopes to work with what both schools already have in place, to provide support to the whole school community.

“I’ll be working with what teachers are already doing,” she explained.

“I’ll bring whatever I can and will hopefully build on the school vision as I deliver the pastoral program.”

Nancy has spent quite a few years studying to gain qualifications, which she believes helped her land this position.

She also spent time as a youth support worker (residential care) in Adelaide, providing support for children at risk.

“You want to see these young ones thrive…see them do well in every aspect of their lives,” Nancy said.

Local churches continue to support chaplaincy with some funding along with the Balaklava Support Group, consisting of Margaret Manuel (chair), Catherine Karklins (treasurer), Heather Cunningham (committee) and Bronwyn Cottle (committee). Ryan Bernhardt is chaplain at Balaklava High School and David Woodroofe looks after Owen Primary School.