LAMOURETTE Folly’s contribution to her school and the Ballarat community has been praised.
The Phoenix College year 10 student was a recipient of a Ballarat student citizenship award earlier this month.
Lamourette juggles her time helping her mum, doing her school work, playing sports, working casually and volunteering.
This year, her main community projects were volunteering with the Centre for Multicultural Youth (CMY) and the We Are You program.
“In the CMY project, we help people who have just come to Australia. They may be refugees or have come from a detention centre and we do things like show them around and help them find a house,” Lamourette said.
The We Are You project involved taking photos of different people around the community and sticking them to buildings around Ballarat.
They were featured on laneways in the city centre, cafe Eclectic Tastes and Mair Street’s Blockbuster videos.
“The goal was to show that everyone’s life was worth something,” Lamourette said.
“Everyone may look different but we’re really all the same.”
A student from each high school in Ballarat was presented with the Order of Australia Association Ballarat Group Student Citizenship Award earlier this month at the Town Hall.
“I felt really lucky to be up there with everyone else,” Lamourette said.
Lamourette came to Australia as a 12-year-old who could not speak any English.
“My background is from Togo but as there was a war in Togo at the time, I was born in Benin where we lived in a refugee camp,” she said.
“I spent the first 11 to 12 years of my life in refugee camps.”
Lamourette now speaks English, her fourth language, fluently.
“I don’t like sitting around at home," she said.
“I like to be out doing things and helping people.
“My mum sometimes thinks I’m out too much so I try to do things that would make her proud.”