North Haven Public School students involved in Christmas Cards to Troops project

Important project: North Haven Public School students with National Servicemen’s Association representatives from the Port Macquarie-Hastings branch John James (Chat) and Ray Chester.
Important project: North Haven Public School students with National Servicemen’s Association representatives from the Port Macquarie-Hastings branch John James (Chat) and Ray Chester.

Year 5 and 6 students from North Haven Public School have participated in a project with the National Servicemen’s Association to send people serving overseas a special message for Christmas. 

The association’s Port Macquarie-Hastings representatives Ray Chester and John James (Chat) visited the school on November 30 to hear some of the messages from Year 6 students. 

“We’ve had a very good response from North Haven Public School,” Mr Chester said. 

“We’ve been doing the Cards to Troops Project for seven years now.” 

Mr Chester said the sub branch had collected about 3500 Christmas cards from participating schools across the region. The cards will be delivered to men and women serving overseas. 

“Some of the messages on the cards really bring a lump to your throat,” he said. 

The cards will be sent to members of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) at 13 different locations around the globe. 

“Right at this moment there are about 3300 of our men and women who are serving,” Mr Chester said. 

Students often receive positive feedback once their message is received. 

“Sometimes they receive a card back and on some occasions the ADF members send flags or  badges,” Mr Chester said. 

“One lady here in Laurieton actually received a phone call from Afghanistan,” he said. 

“This major was chuffed about receiving a card from the area because his mother lived in Port Macqaurie.”

Even though a card is just a small token of appreciation Mr Chester said it can make all the difference to people who are not home for Christmas. 

“Especially as it comes from a young person it shows our defence people that someone at home besides their immediate family is thinking about them and is appreciative of what they’re achieving,” he said. 

North Haven Public School teacher Nicole Menzies said the project is a great way to get students thinking about issues from a global perspective and for them to appreciate how lucky they are to live in a peaceful existence on the Mid North Coast.