Students find joy in earning and giving

An NRL Cowboys House program designed to teach students the value of hard work and managing money is proving a hit, with students even using their House “dollars” to selflessly make an impact on the lives of others.

Young Hope Vale student Ty Gibson is among a number of students who are shining examples of how Cowboys Dollars, an innovative rewards program at NRL Cowboys House, is teaching young residents the value of hard work and managing money.

A Year 8 student at Heatley State High School, Ty has been hard at work cleaning up in the kitchen each night as part of the ‘Work at the House’ program.

Through his efforts, Ty has earned ‘Cowboys Dollars’, introduced as House ‘currency’ through the program.

There wasn’t a dry eye in the House when Ty used his dollars, a reward for his own hard work, to purchase a Nintendo Switch for his cousin for her birthday.

In addition to the independence and pride that earning brings, General Manager Rochelle Jones says the program encourages good behaviour, provides valuable work experience, and teaches the value of money and strategies for saving.

“The Cowboys Dollars rewards program, which runs alongside the Work at the House program, is developing students’ confidence and work ethic, allowing them to show integrity and giving them skills they can then include on their resumes,” she said.

“It’s giving them an opportunity to contribute to the day-to-day running of the House and be rewarded for their efforts.

“We have a list of created jobs on offer which students can apply for by submitting a resume and going through an interview process, including roles such as kitchenhand, dining hall cleaners, garden maintenance crew, laundry assistant and car detailer.”

Students are also rewarded with Cowboys Dollars through school attendance and positive behaviour, as well as maintaining their boarding rooms and attending meals on time.

Cowboys Dollars can be ‘spent’ on items from the prize cabinets set up on both boys and girls campuses, with items varying in value, to teach students the importance of setting short and long-term financial goals.

Items have been donated by a number of local businesses and individuals including Maddalena Gabrielli, Toyota, Harvey Norman, North Queensland Toyota Cowboys and PFD Food Services.

Students including Ty lined up to spend some of their hard-earned dollars at the end of term three, while others decided to save their money instead.

Students could choose from a range of Cowboys merchandise, electronics such as speakers and headphones, remote control cars, fishing gear, hair straighteners, make-up accessories, personal gaming consoles and Lego sets.

Jobs offered through the Work at the House program may also lead to casual jobs for senior students at NRL Cowboys House, paid with real money.

If you’re interested in donating items for the Cowboys Dollars program, contact NRL Cowboys House, email cowboyshouse@cowboys.com.au.



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