The Axedale community might be small, but they are not afraid to think big. Five years ago, Axedale Primary School’s then Principal Lex Johnstone, identified the need to put a cover over the netball court. Various activities were dependent on the weather, with many PE lessons, recess and lunch breaks being conducted indoors.
“Axedale is a small school with just over 110 students, so having a structure this big is very rare,” explained Corrina Hartland, Principal of Axedale Primary School.
“There was a general consensus in the community that covering the netball court was too important to give up on, so work began raising money towards the $95,000 cover,” Corrina continued.
School Council decided to funnel all fundraising efforts into the project and over the years there were golf days, trivia nights, pie drives, Christmas raffles, book fairs, shearing events and more, which helped raise the funds bit-by-bit.
A major contributor was Fosterville Gold Mine, who made a generous donation towards the fundraising efforts.
“By February 2021, we were ready to go with the full $95,000 in the bank, so we sent off the plans for approval,” said Corrina.
“Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control, approval of the plans was delayed until August, by which time the prices of building materials had spiked due to the pandemic,” continued Corrina.
When the Fosterville Gold Mine team found out about a shortfall in funds, they contacted Corrina and offered to cover the shortfall to ensure that the project was able to go ahead.
Thanks to the hard work of everyone, the cover has now been built and cleared for use.
The children already love the space and have given great feedback about how it has improved their school experience:
"Our end of year concert was amazing! We could all sit in the shade out of the heat, and we could spread out. It was a great community event." – Emme
"On hot sunny days we have somewhere to play and on rainy days we can still go outside." – Eliza.
"I love that we can still have sport on a rainy day." – Darcy.
"As a school, we need this netball court roof as it gives us so many more options for our learning and recess and lunch times." – Logan