Tenterfield school boys become ‘Goodfellas’

Tenterfield school boys become ‘Goodfellas’

The In a Good Place (IAGP) program supports rural, regional and remote communities in their efforts to strengthen the mental health of at-risk and vulnerable members of their communities via projects, services or activities that are preventative or responsive in nature and which are designed to engage those less likely, unable due to distance and isolation, or ineligible to participate in mainstream mental health services. This grants program is funded by CCI Giving with the help of the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR).

The Tenterfield Social Development Committee in northern NSW were among the first recipients of the In A Good Place grants program. They partnered with Tenterfield High School and Community Service Workers to foster the resilience and wellbeing of students by providing in-school behavioural intervention programs.

The 'Goodfellas' program and the 'Shark Cage' program have four main objectives:

  • Foster resilience in young men and women
  • Reduce violence in relationship;
  • Reduce youth involvement in criminal activities;
  • Eliminate bullying.

The funding supported the delivery of the Goodfellas program, and purchased resources for the Shark Cage program, which respectively target boys and girls aged 15-17. 'Goodfellas' is a myth-busting program for boys that aims to debunk the most common and damaging myths about boys in a really engaging, funny and positive way. It builds up skills that allow the boys to move beyond stereotypes to change their behaviours, expectations and attitudes.

The one day workshop was delivered to around 50 boys as part of the School's wellbeing program, and also explored the concept of male leadership. Principal Sandra Rosner said, "It is important to support our boys to grow into young men who are confident, assured and respectful of women."

The 'Goodfellas' and 'Shark Cage' programs both provided the basis for building a collaborative whole-school community strategy to address student wellbeing and mental health issues.