Brent Livermore speaks to Grafton Public School students about the Letterlink program.
Brent Livermore speaks to Grafton Public School students about the Letterlink program.

Brent?s big day out


PICKING up a piece of chalk, the Australian men's hockey team captain, Brent Livermore, stepped into the unfamiliar territory of teaching yesterday.

Mr Livermore was at his old school, Grafton Public, helping class 3TA write letters to their favourite Commonwealth Games athletes, as he launched the Australia Post Letterlink program.

The program launch came as part of a busy day for the former Grafton hockey star; he had just come from officially opening the new Bunnings superstore in South Grafton.

Despite being a bit of a self-declared DIY failure, Mr Livermore said he was happy to be opening the store, which has employed more than 90 Valley locals and will have a celebratory firework display tonight from 9pm.

"My wife is expecting our second child so a lot of my shopping expeditions lately have been to the Bunnings store close to us, to get paint and things like that," he said.

But you won't see him close to a circular saw.

During the opening, Mr Livermore related the story of a close shave with one of the tools during his major HSC woodwork project ? which took off the tip of one finger.

Luckily there were no such incidents yesterday, particularly in the lead-up to the Kookaburras' bid to win a third gold medal at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games next month.

At Grafton Public School, Mr Livermore encouraged the assembled students to pick up a pencil and write to their favourite athletes as part of the Letterlink program.

"It's very inspiring for us to know that you're out there supporting us and it's nice to hear about what you kids do," he said.

He said the program was an important part of retaining students' writing and literacy skills.

"I think it's important because we're in an age where a lot of people send emails and some kids forget the importance of writing, but there's always more of a special touch to a handwritten letter," he said.

Australia Post expects to deliver more than 500,000 Letterlink letters during this year's games.

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