EdConnect Australia brings together Karoo Primary School and local retirement village


As part of the Emerging Stronger grant from the Victorian Government, EdConnect has been working in local communities across Victoria to link retirement villages to local schools.

This program has enabled EdConnect to deliver an intergenerational volunteering program that brings together residents of retirement and lifestyle villages with young people in nearby schools through volunteering.

In the South East of Melbourne, EdConnect Australia reached out to two Rowville retirement villages – Waterford Valley and The Links – and ran an information session on the program and volunteering in a local school.

With local residents signed up to volunteer, EdConnect was able to approach a local primary school with volunteers that were screened, trained and ready to start supporting their students.

Karoo Primary School, within a 5 minute drive of the villages, was thrilled to be approached about the opportunity to partner with EdConnect and have volunteers help support their students thrive.

Courtney Hoffmann, Wellbeing and Inclusion Assistant Principal, recalls her experience partnering with EdConnect.

“As a school, we had already been thinking about how can we could connect with our local community further, and the value that it would bring to our school, for some time, so when EdConnect contacted us, we jumped at the opportunity,” she said.

“A big appeal was knowing that there were local volunteers ready to start at our school, as well as the opportunity to build an ongoing relationship between the school and the retirement village,” she continued.

“The volunteers have already made an impact, and having a trusted grandparent like figure in a student’s life is invaluable.”


“It has been great having volunteers that have been screened, interviewed and trained prior to us being in contact with them. Partnering with EdConnect has therefore ensured that sourcing volunteers has been an easy and straightforward process.  Furthermore, we know that we can trust the volunteers that are supporting our school,” said Courtney.


“Even though they are still relatively new to the school community, they have fitted right in and the students and the teachers are thrilled to have their support.”

“This partnership has also lead to discussions with the retirement villages to work jointly on future activities and events with the village residents and our students.”

Through partnering with EdConnect Australia, the school and the retirement village are developing strong relationships that will continue to flourish into the future.

To find out more about EdConnect Australia, please visit our website www.edconnect.org.au, email edconnect@edconnect.org.au or call 1800 668 550.