In conjunction with Mr John Richards, Director of Christian Service-Learning, the Aquinas College Foundation was proud to launch the Annual Foundation Philanthropy Award this year to recognise students – across Junior School, Middle School and Senior School - and staff who actively embraced our four touchstones of Liberating Education, Gospel Spirituality, Inclusive Community and Justice and Solidarity during the year, and made outstanding contributions to the College or local community.

Congratulations to everyone who was nominated throughout Term 3. The quality of nominees was outstanding, making selection a challenge. After much deliberation by the selection committee, Noah Myers (Year 7) emerged as the Middle School winner and Jack Sheppard (Year 11) the Senior School winner (there were no Junior School or staff winners for 2022). Certificates of commendation are presented to the winners at their relevant Presentation Nights. Read on to find out more about our Middle School and Senior School winners.

Noah Myers, Middle School Winner

Noah demonstrated great initiative by finding placements at Foodbank and Conservation Volunteers during his school holiday breaks. These agencies normally engage much older students and adults, so for a Year 7 student, like Noah, this was a wonderful achievement and service to his community. Noah has selected the Cancer Council WA as the recipient of his $500 prize money.

“I first volunteered when I did the Ignite Award in year 5 & 6 and I really enjoyed it. I chose Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA). In Year 7, I found out we had to do a minimum of 10 hours of community service. I thought about volunteering for another organisation, as well as CVA, and decided on Foodbank, as I knew about what they did as a charity and I wanted to help. This Award means that I can give back to another organisation. If I can play a part in that, then it means the volunteer hours have even more meaning. My Nan sadly passed away from cancer and my parents told me how proud she would have been to know I made a contribution to Cancer Council in not only her memory, but for everyone affected by the disease.”
Noah Myers (Year 7)

“We are so proud of Noah’s achievements. Every time he volunteers, he gets stuck right in and just gets on with whatever he is asked to do. Noah is so pleased he can give back by donating some well-needed money to his chosen cause which is the Cancer Council WA. Having lost his much-loved Nan to cancer, it’s a cause close to his heart. Noah is lucky to have Aquinas support him in his endeavours. We wholly encourage not only Noah’s, but also any young man’s, efforts in giving back. We feel blessed we continue to be able to do this. It truly does impact positively on everyone involved.”
Sally and David Myers

Noah Myers
Caroline Bryndzej from the Cancer Council with award winner Noah Myers

Jack Sheppard, Senior School Winner

Jack is the founder of Jack’s Creative Kitchen, and has been baking, packaging and selling cookies since he was fourteen years old. Jack donates all his proceeds to local charities, including Saint Barts Refuge and Autism Association WA. In addition, Jack has used his Christmas wrapping skills to raise more than $1500 for Variety Club WA, donated 150 cookie bags for Edmund Rice Day 2021, helping to raise funds for Edmund Rice ministries, and spent personal time caring for autistic children. Jack has selected Autism Association of WA as the recipient of his $500 prize money.

“My philanthropic work is something that I hold close to me. I get to do something I love, baking and creating has always been a passion of mine, and I always wanted to do it on a large scale. The prospect to raise money to help others was a great opportunity. I have personally seen the wonderful work charities like St Barts, Variety WA and Autism Association of WA have done and it makes me proud to know my hard work goes to worthwhile causes. I’m just a person who loves helping people. It just feels natural to me and puts the biggest smile on my face. Especially when I’m using my time to do something worthwhile. It’s a very special feeling when you give your time to make someone else happy … the most amazing part of the award was the $500 prize money that I was able to donate to the Autism Association of WA. I have always wanted to acknowledge those living with Autism in our Aquinas community and show my care and support. Jack Sheppard (Year 11)

We love Jack’s enthusiasm for service. Nothing is ever too much trouble. He is always willing and able, provided the support and the opportunity is there to help him. We encourage all parents to support their sons in pursuit of activities they enjoy that can also help others. Whether it is organised by themselves or the school, it is a spiritually rewarding experience that they should not miss as part of the holistic education offered at Aquinas. As Jack enters adulthood, service will always be a part of his life and we are so thankful to all the teachers and staff for supporting him in this area of his education. We are blessed to have a son who, more often than not, places others before himself and we are extremely proud of the beautiful man he is becoming.”
Fiona and Mark Sheppard

It is reassuring to know there is a generation of young philanthropists in our own community who are already making a difference in their world.

Jack Sheppard
Award winner Jack Sheppard with Paul Baird from Autism Association WA