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Salim Layoun was in his final year of a Primary Teaching degree at the University of Wollongong when he began volunteering in the CareSouth Homework Hub. It was an experience he found “invaluable”.

“CareSouth’s Homework Hub allowed me to build connections and professional relationships with children who are often neglected in the classroom,” said Salim. “Working with these vulnerable children has opened my eyes and provided me with insights into where the education system is sometimes strained – the children who are often overlooked or left behind.”

Volunteering in the Homework Hub allowed Salim to gain hands-on-experience and refine and consolidate his teaching skills with a large group of students with differing needs before starting his career.

“As a teacher, working with these vulnerable children has taught me that a child’s background and experiences do not define or represent who they are,” said Salim. “All children are unique and possess different skills, abilities and talents. CareSouth’s Homework Hub makes sure these children are supported, whether it’s dancing, mathematics, reading, astronomy, visual arts, rapping, or social communication skills.”

Salim has now completed his teaching degree and is working as a casual teacher, studying for his masters in teaching English as a second language. He has also taken on a mentoring role with a CareSouth Homework Hub student after the pair bonded.

“The Homework Hub provided me with invaluable insights into the needs of a wide range of children,” said Salim. “I was able to support not only their academic needs but also their social and emotional well-being. Specifically, I was able to provide these vulnerable children with a positive role model that they could trust. Through these experiences, I developed strategies that I could use within the classroom to ensure no child gets left behind.

“The Homework Hub is an opportunity to make a positive change within the community,” said Salim. “Everyone is friendly, supportive and willing to assist at any time and there is a real sense of community and enjoyment – both for volunteers and importantly the students. The best part is seeing these children leave each afternoon learning a thing or two with a smile!”

The Homework Hub runs every Tuesday from 3.30-5.30pm. Call us today on 1300 554 260 to find out how you can help change a child’s life.

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