Information For Parents
Since 1999 Encounter Youth, a not-for-profit charitable organisation, has been managing Schoolies Festival™ at Victor Harbor, South Australia. Schoolies Festival™ is part of an extensive Operation that we coordinate to enable young people to celebrate safely, whilst minimising the impact on the local Victor Harbor community. Schoolies Festival™ 2017 is being held on the 24th, 25th and 26th of November at Warland Reserve, Victor Harbor. Check out the rest of the site for more information or visit the Schoolies Festival™ Facebook Page for the latest updates about the Festival.
Over 600 Encounter Youth Green Team Volunteers are actively involved throughout the operation. The Green Team volunteers come from Christian communities across South Australia. They are committed to making the Year 12’s Schoolies Festival™ experience as fun and safe as possible.
Volunteers are located
- In and around the Schoolies Festival™ site including the surrounding streets.
- At most major accommodation venues 24 hours over the 3 nights. This includes Victor Harbor Holiday & Cabin Park, Beachfront Holiday Park, Adare Caravan Park, Port Elliot Holiday Park, Middleton Caravan Park and Goolwa Camping & Tourist Park.
- On every Free MAC Schoolies Festival™ Bus. Buses leave Adelaide Central Bus Station on Friday November 24th at 10am and 2pm. Return buses from the Fleurieu on Monday November 27th (see timetable on the app for times.) Book your FREE bus seat here. FREE shuttle buses operate from Encounter Bay to Goolwa from Friday afternoon to early Monday morning. Check out the travel page for more information, and download the free Schoolies Festival™ App (coming soon!) for an interactive schedule and map.
Preparation tips before your young person leaves for Schoolies Festival™ 2017
1. Download the free Schoolies Festival™ App so you and your young person are informed about where to go, what they can do and the support services in place if they need to seek help.
2. Before talking with your young person consider preparing what topics you would like to discuss and how you would like to approach each area. If there is more than one parent it is always important to have a unified front on every topic.
3. Have the discussion with your young person. Encourage your young person with the positive decisions they have already made about planning for the event. Remember, the majority of Year 12 students who attend Schoolies Festival™ make great choices, have a great time and get home safely!
Some questions to consider asking yourself as a parent:
“What contact would I like to have with my young person over the weekend?”
- Consider organising a routine time and communication method with your young person over the weekend. Schoolies Festival™ is open from 7pm-3am each night so it might be best to schedule your contact outside of that time e.g. maybe during the day between 11am and 2pm.
- If you are unable to make contact, try not to panic. Remember phone coverage can be poor at mass gatherings. This includes phone data.
- Consider having the numbers of your young person’s friends as an option to use if you can’t get in contact with your young person. You may also think about obtaining the phone numbers of the friend’s parents to contact them in a time of need.
- Social media may also be another great communication tool.
“How am I going to effectively provide safety advice to my young person?”
- Remember your communication style is important. Encourage your young person to tell you what they have already planned, rather than assuming what they have not planned.
- Try and avoid statements like – ‘Don’t do anything stupid’ ‘Why don’t you…?’ ‘Do you realise…?’
“How am I going to assist my young person to develop a backup plan if the need arises?”
- The most important thing is to reassure your young person that you can be contacted no matter what the situation. You may want to discuss another person that they could contact e.g. a family friend or sibling.
- Discuss the options if your young person were to lose contact with their friends. You could suggest they organise a meeting point for their friends at the Festival (e.g. meet at the Cloakroom each night at 1am)
- Ensure they know the name and address of their accommodation.