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Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge

Each year St Marys Rugby League Club give two young local students the opportunity of a lifetime… to participate in the Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge, trekking through mud and rain, across mountain ranges up to 2,200m above sea level with a 20kg pack strapped to their back.

Over the last 7 years, Saints has sponsored 14 young adults to walk in the footsteps of our brave soldiers and take on the Kokoda Trek. The ultimate aim is to prepare these young students to return from the trek and share their experiences with their peers, the broader community and the next generation.

The Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge is designed to give participants:

  • An appreciation of our military history
  • A respect for the sacrifice made by young Australians of a previous generation
  • An appreciation of a culture whose values are not based on materialism
  • An appreciation of the qualities necessary for teamwork
  • An appreciation of the characteristics of leadership and
  • An understanding of the purpose and value of community service

From a record number of applications, our 2 deserving Trekkers have been selected for the 2019 Kokoda Trek.

Watch what previous Trekkers have to say about how Kokoda changed their lives.



Past Participants Sponsored by Saints

2011 – Laura Mitchell – St Marys Senior High School
2011 – Benjamin Snelgrove – Kingswood High School
2012 – Isabel Tibbles – St Marys Senior High School
2012 – Madelyn Smith – St Marys Senior High School
2013 – Grace Shalders – Penrith Academic Selective High School
2013 – Jordan Ruchalski – Penrith Academic Selective High School
2014 – Kayley James – Jamison High School
2014 – Robert Vukovich – Erskine Park High School
2016 – Brianna Raymond – St Agnes Catholic High School
2016 – James Ombina – St Marys Senior High School
2017 – Grace Faulder – Penrith Academic Selective High School
2017 – Callum Meney – Penrith Christian School
2018 – Anastasia Ellis – St Marys Senior High School
2018 – Annalise Della Libera – St Marys Senior High School