Respect Ambassador Program
In association with the Victorian Women's Trust and Dugdale Trust, the Respect Ambassador Program (RAP) was created in response to the Victorian Government Bully Stoppers Campaign, Make a stand, Lend a hand.

The Dugdale Trust was set up to address Violence in our community, particularly that against women and girls. Significant research demonstrates the potential of school bullying behaviour to lead to entrenched violent behaviour and attitudes as youth and adults. Violence prevention program's must begin very early to interrupt these behaviours. The Make a stand, Lend a hand theme is intrinsically linked to bystander education currently delivered to youth via the VWT Be the Hero! Program. This new RAP initiative takes bystander education into primary schools to foster early positive and respectful behaviour education.
Project Overview 
The Respect Ambassadors Program (RAP) is a five week bystander activation program building on materials and tools provided by the Department of Education and Early Child Development’s “Bully Stoppers: Make a stand Lend a hand (MASLAH)” initiative.

The central aspect of RAP is the use of drama, art, sport, and mindfulness activities to provide our students with an opportunity to observe and discuss bullying situations and to safely practice positive intervention (bystander) strategies. Covered topics will include Cyber Bullying, Peer Rejection and Ostracizing, Physical Victimization and Threats of Harm, and Gender Violence and Homophobia.

RAP will be delivered to our students in partnership with NIRODAH the School Wellbeing Specialists. It will use a train the trainer model to assist our staff in providing education and training in safe methods to support a victim in bullying scenarios in order to eliminate the silence associated with bullying and to practice skills of reporting effectively. NIRODAH specialists will be utilised as a community partner throughout the program, with program development, training, support and materials to be delivered by NIRODAH, and program content to be delivered by school staff.

Project Outcomes
  • Possibility to create a model that can be taken to a broader group of schools
  • Promotes parent and community engagement
  • Establish significant link between the VWT and local communities
  • Authentic learning opportunity as Ambassadors must first comprehend the education to successfully educate their peers
  • Students gain confidence through practice how to become active bystanders in the community as they progress to youth and adulthood
  • Sustainability met as each year the outgoing Respect Ambassadors train incumbent year 5 group
  • Students learn how to become responsible for the culture of their own school
  • Aspirational program leading to uptake of positive behaviour
  • Leadership opportunity for all students
  • Respectful language and behaviours taught to students
Our nine schools are currently completing their Respect Ambassador Programs. The response has been magnificent with every school integrating the program to suit their schools. Feedback has been fantastic including some brilliant work by the students.

Training Day
Schools participated in a one day Respect Ambassador training day. Not only was it an opportunity to train but also to participate. Feedback has been overwhelming positive from all attendees.

Question: "What did you like most about the workshop?"
  • The knowledge and experience. Openness to accept our ideas. Great level of support
  • Small group and opportunity to interact
  • Enthusiastic facilitators
  • Feel very enthused about implementing program - it was great to have an extra day at school to meet with the other RAP members to really determine our focus and the logistics of the program

"What did you like most about the workshop?

  • I think that this program is great because it helps students to reach out and let others know what's happening and how they feel about because it's often hard to reach out for help when being bullied. -Thornbury High Student
  • It was very fun participating in the respect ambassador program. I learnt that there are many types of bullying and not just physical bulling. I became the rap ambassador and I am very proud that I can share what I have learnt from the respect ambassador program with my peers and I wish that everyone should learn this program. -Year 6 Glenroy Central Primary Student
  • I have been going through a lot lately and this program really helped me to just stand up for myself and not let people walk all over me. When he was telling some stories it made me cry because I'm going through a hard time at the moment and I just wish everything was okay and back to the way it was. I was not excited to go to school but after experiencing this program, I feel up to it and I feel happy again. -Mt Eliza Secondary College Student
  • This session provided valuable insight into what is happening on the playground...issues etc. Timely information to follow up on. -St Raphael Teacher
  • Topics have been allocated to different classes, therefore my aspect of bullying being explored is bullying within relationships. It started off with brain storming, discussions, agree/disagree/unsure activity and exploring how different types of bullying inter-relates. Students were interested in this component (relationships) due to the relevance to them at present. Posters were made exploring healthy and unhealthy relationships followed by who we have relationships with and the different types we have (personal, professional and romantic). -Teacher
Testimonial from Mornington Park
The celebration was a huge success! Most students attended and were extremely enthusiastic! (not to mention VERY excited!!!). The best part of the celebration was seeing families that very rarely come to our school or who are hard to communicate with attend. Past students of mine came along to support siblings, but then I invited in other past students of mine in to join us who were walking past on the street. The sense of community was really strong and it echoed for days afterwards! Thank you to you all at NIRODAH for your support in regards to the implementation of such a valuable program. Both myself and the students gained so much from you all during those five weeks. Each one of you brought such a positive, supportive and caring warmth into our school and the lives of our students. You earned a special place in our hearts. Make sure you stay in contact with us.
Thank you once again, Jasmine and all the students from 5/6M!
Scroll through the wonderful examples of Student work, created during the RAP training days:
Mother of God Students during the RAP training day:
(coming soon)