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Roger retires from helping youth help themselves

Youth Support Coordinator Roger Boum gives a heartfelt farewell to students Mabel McCormack, Alysha Etuale and Jack Bruce at Aspley State High School.
Youth Support Coordinator Roger Boum gives a heartfelt farewell to students Mabel McCormack, Alysha Etuale and Jack Bruce at Aspley State High School. Renee McKeown

TEARS flowed as Roger Boum said a farewell to Aspley State High School after dedicating almost a decade to helping students across the northside connect with the community.

Students and staff honoured the retiring youth support coordinator with a special assembly, school band performance, haka, afternoon tea, jam session and a book of dedicated letters of thanks and respect.

Mr Boum said his time at Aspley had brought him so much happiness over the years.

"I feel emotional, it is so hard to describe, so I have a quote from Winnie the Pooh, 'How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard',” he said.

"I've made friendships with students and families, linked them to the community, worked with young people to develop their ideas into projects.

"I have so many wonderful memories of this school that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

"None of this was possible without the support of staff.”

Aspley principal Jacquita Miller said Mr Boum had made an incredible contribution and touched so many young people's hearts.

"He always talks about helping one young person at a time, from the students who are disengaged and challenged to the highly motivated, musical kids,” she said.

"I'm really happy for him and sad for us but I am confident for the legacy he's left for us.”

One of Mr Boum's legacy's is the Aspley A Factor talent competition which the school will continue.

McDonald's Bracken Ridge owner Rod Chiapello said Mr Boum and the students also helped with entertainment on McHappy Day and he was an inspiration to all.

"Roger helped in creating people who can love themselves so they can love others,” he said.

During his time as a youth support coordinator Mr Boum also worked at other state schools including Bracken Ridge, Wavell, Sandgate and Jabiru Community College.

After his retirement from this role Mr Boum said he will have his next adventure in Europe before returning to Queensland and helping young people in some way in the future.

Topics:  aspley bracken ridge haka jabiru retirement sandgate youth


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