Our Story

Girls from Oz provides activities to children and young people in remote Australia that expand life experiences, create connections, encourage growth in confidence and increase opportunities for those who have limited access to high quality performing arts education.

Girls from Oz (g-oz) was formed in 2007 by directors, staff and alumni of the Australian School of Performing Arts (ASPA). g-oz provides performing arts education to those unable to access this opportunity due to finances, location or other circumstances. g-oz capitalises on over 30 years of experience as ASPA runs the Australian Girls Choir and a3 - australian arts alive; g-oz utilises the dynamic teaching approach, reputation, resources and intellectual property of ASPA.

With a focus on Indigenous girls and young women, g-oz uses the performing arts as a hook of engagement to encourage participants to regularly attend school and experience the benefits of sustained engagement in educational activities.

The intention of our programs is to provide opportunities for disadvantaged young women to acquire the knowledge, skills and confidence required to embark on adulthood with positivity and feelings of connectedness to the wider Australian community. Our programs seek to simultaneously improve learning outcomes, foster physical health, promote social and emotional well-being, improve behaviour, build a positive sense of cultural identity, develop life skills and ultimately enhance the future life prospects of participants.

Our experience informs our belief that:

  • Children who engage in performing arts education are more likely to participate in programs throughout adolescence and into their young adult years. When activities are fun, social and dynamic, and program leaders engender trust, the performing arts can serve as an early intervention and prevention strategy preventing absenteeism and enhancing engagement.
  • Children and youth lacking intrinsic motivation about school and learning might still respond to extrinsic motivators like special activities and excursions. While g-oz session content is designed to engage participants intrinsically – with high quality, dynamic and fun activities – incentives like our travel program might inspire attendance and participation, and the learning involved in meeting the eligibility criteria is invaluable.
  • Children, adolescents and young adults participating in performing arts activities with trusted program leaders will, inevitably, take risks and try things that they otherwise might not. Each time participants experience fear of trying followed by a successful outcome they will feel emboldened to try again, or to try an activity in the classroom of which they might have felt fearful. Over the course of a consistently delivered developmental program children, adolescents and young adults will feel more positive about taking risks in learning environments and will grow in their confidence to try. “There’s no shame in trying.” This may in turn enhance their attitude to considering further study and employment.

Download the 2016 Annual Report

2016 Annual Report 2016 Annual Report