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The School

Wollongong Public School is located close to the centre of the city. While the majority of our students live locally, we have a number of students enrolled in OC classes for gifted and talented students who travel in from all over the Illawarra. We have a rich mixture of students from different cultures in the school. We take great pride in the level of acceptance and respect for different cultures shown by our students.

Wollongong Public School has a long and rich history in the Illawarra region. A school has existed in Wollongong since 1826.

The Project

13 JUNE 2017 - Refugee Week Workshop

Red Room Poetry collaborated with Illawarra Multicultural Services to celebrate REFUGEE WEEK 2017. We delivered Poetry Object workshops to 120 students of Refugee backgrounds from Wollongong Public School.

Yuin poet and emerging children's author Kirli Saunders led the students to create poems that told stories of their most treasured objects through Red Room's Poetry Object competition.

Poems from the day are to be published in the student's first languages and English on the Red Room Poetry website.
You can also see them exhibited at SCARF's Refugee Week event.

The Poet

Kirli Saunders

Kirli Saunders is a proud Gunai woman with ties to the Yuin, Gundungurra, Gadigal and Biripi people. Kirli is the Manager of Poetic Learning and Aboriginal Cultural Liaison at Red Room Poetry. She was awarded ‘Worker of the Year 2017’ at the NAIDOC awards in the Illawarra/ Shoalhaven region and has been nominated for a National NAIDOC award in 2018. Kirli founded the Poetry in First Languages project. Her first children’s picture book The Incredible Freedom Machines, illustrated by Matt Ottley was selected for Bologna Book Fair and is published internationally. Her second picture book Our Dreaming will be released by Scholastic in July 2019, Happy Ever After will follow in February 2020. Kirli’s First Poetry Collection, Kindred is to be released by Magabala in 2019, it was Highly Commended in the 2018 Black&Write! prize. Kirli’s poem ‘A Dance of Hands’ was Runner-up in the Nakata Brophy Prize. Kirli’s poetry has been published by Cordite and Overland and has embedded in infrastructure at Darling Harbour and the Royal Botanical Gardens, Melbourne. In 2018, Kirli will be Writer in Residence at Bundanon Trust, Q Station and The Literature Centre, Fremantle for ‘The Sound of Picture Books’.