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Graham installing the seat at Emmanuel Christian School


A ‘Buddy Bench’, which is also known as a friendship bench is a special place within a school playground where a child can go when they want someone to talk to, or play with.   Other children and staff will recognise this as a sign that some help, support or comfort is needed and come to talk with the child.

The ‘Buddy Bench’ is also a means by which a child can seek support without the need to rationalise their feelings or to seek-out a particular member of staff of special friend.  Because the bench is in the day-to-day environment of the school it can be used at any time and for any reason – from seemingly trivial matters to more serious concerns – and encourages children to ask for help when they are troubled

The ‘Buddy Bench’ concept was originally created in 2012 by a fifth grader at the Acacia Woodley School in North America, and very happily is the founder and CEO of a company titled, Tiny Girl, Big Dream.

Research undertaken by the National Federation of Schools in Australia has identified the ‘Buddy Bench’ provides an ideal solution to bullying in schools.  Both primary schools and high schools have celebrated the installation of ‘Buddy Benches’ as a positive and welcome addition to the school playground.

Buddy Bench Installation

Howrah Rotary in conjunction with a Community Grant from Clarence Council funded the building and erection of six buddy benches in Eastern Shore Schools. Lauderdale, Emmanuel Christian , John Paul II, Clarendon Vale, Rokeby & South Arm Schools.

Clarendon Vale Community Centre in conjunction with Bayview Secondary College were instrumental in the building and erection of these seats.

Clarendon Vale Primary School hosted  the official launch on Friday 27 th July. Read the report in the Eastern Shore Sun

CLARENDON Vale Primary School students are recognising the importance of friendship following the official launch of the “Buddy Bench” late last month.

In attendance at the event was Clarence Mayor Doug Chipman, alongside representatives from Howrah Rotary Club and Bayview Secondary College.


Inspired by the Club’s decision to install   these “Buddy Benches”   —    Rotarian George J Toepfer]    contributed 

The Club saw the need to help our area’s children of today
In case they couldn’t find a friend with whom they could play.
Investigations were set, of where solutions could be sought.
The aim was ‘locals for the locals’, for any items to be bought.

Local schools were sounded out if they needed a ‘buddy’ bench.
Local craftsmen were invited to use their hammer and wrench,
To compile the ‘buddy seats’ now needed at quite a few schools.
A design decided upon, down to serious work with their tools.

In partnership with the local Men’s Shed, the work was begun
Many hands co-operating, to produce happiness for everyone!
The satisfaction of making buddy seats and putting them in place,
Creating that area to find a friend; that special linking space!

Meetings were held, placement agreed, unique colour per school
Picked for each school’s needs, excitement in the thinking pool.
The Men’s Shed became a hive of work putting plans into action,
Ultimate goal being, to evoke many a school’s positive reaction.

The anticipation was heightened when schools told of their bench.
Schools abuzz re colour, location, pouring the cement base trench!
A simple idea but so full of promise, to give loneliness ‘air’ the boot,
For the sake of happier kids, this was one great project, made to suit.




Helpers from the Clarendon Vale Men’s shed, assisted by our Jan, installing a seat at South Arm.