Pallara State School Unveils ‘Garden of Service’ Honouring Veteran Families

The Pallara State School History Club has created a special “Garden of Service” on the school grounds to honour local families who have had members serve in major conflicts. 

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The garden opening ceremony on Thursday, April 18, was attended by representatives and veterans from the Forest Lake and Sunnybank RSL sub-branches.

The idea stemmed from the club’s award-winning 2023 Vietnam Research Project for the ANZAC Awards. After their successful project, the students decided to gather information from Pallara families about relatives who served in WWI, WWII, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts.

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An overgrown area next to the school’s ANZAC memorial was cleared and transformed into the garden space. Funds from their ANZAC Award win allowed them to prepare the area with mulch, dig trenches for flowers, and add paving stones.

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What makes the garden uniquely personal are the engraved paving stones containing the names of the served family members and their printed handprints and family names placed beside them. Club coordinator and teacher Mr Keegan Peace transcribed the family information onto the stones.

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At the opening ceremony yesterday, students gave speeches and interviewed veterans to learn firsthand accounts of service. Newly sworn-in Councillor Emily Kim joined the RSL guests as the students cut the ribbon, officially opening the garden to be viewed by the school and wider community.

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Pallara State School launched the history club last year for students in grades 3 and 4 who have an interest in Australian and global historical events and figures.

On a weekly basis, the club organises visits from guest speakers to educate the young members about significant subjects and themes from the past. The goal is to foster an early passion for learning about history through these interactive and engaging sessions led by outside experts and authorities on various historical topics.

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The passion project allowed the students to honour local service members whilst creating a vibrant garden space on campus. The Garden of Service stands as a unique testament to the sacrifices made by Pallara’s own families.

Published 27-April-2024