A focus on ‘Homelessness’ for Notre Dame Communication students

Document Type

Media Release

Publication Date

Spring 2-9-2008

Publisher Name

The University of Notre Dame, Fremantle Campus

Publication Place



Wednesday 27 August saw the launch of an important outreach project that Notre Dame Communication students and staff have been working on in support of St Pat’s Community Support Centre, Fremantle.

The project was the production of a DVD, ‘Gimme Shelter’ which promotes the work that St Pat’s does for homeless people in the Fremantle Community.

St Pat’s has been operating in Fremantle since 1972. It provides services such as food, shelter, care, support and spiritual well-being to the homeless and disadvantaged. It is estimated that every night there are 100 – 150 people in and around Fremantle who have no secure place to sleep. St Pat’s connects them with mainstream services in the areas of housing, health services and employment.

Staff, students and special guests which included the Mayor of Fremantle, Peter Tagliaferri and Chair of the Board of St Pat’s, Dr Pat Colgan, gathered for the launch and to watch the DVD in the University’s Communications Laboratory.

Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, Professor Neil Drew, explained in his welcome the importance of the project for Notre Dame.

“This project exemplifies the commitment that the University has to community service, social justice and reconciliation. It is important to us to not only graduate good scholars but also good people,” he said.

Dr Colgan addressed the gathering on behalf of St Pat’s. He said that the DVD raised the plight of disadvantaged in the community. He noted the support of the Mayor for St Pat’s, particularly their re-location to the new larger site close by in Queen Victoria St, Fremantle.

Arts and Science Senior Lecturer Ken Kelso and Lecturer John Reed both worked with the students to produce the DVD. Mr Kelso explained, “This is not the first time Notre Dame students have produced work for not-for-profit organisations.

“Students have done a number of effective community projects, for example Leeuwin Ocean Adventure Foundation, Telethon Speech and Hearing Centre, Riding for the Disabled and SciTech.

“This type of work enables students to learn first-hand about working with a client, understanding their needs, and the importance of timelines and schedules to deliver the brief. Students benefit hugely from this type of production experience.

“We will continue to offer our assistance to community agencies. There are more projects in the pipeline!”

Media contact:

Michele Ebbs 08 9433 0610, 0408 959 138