Today, the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu is to present 271 Young Leaders Awards to Year 7 students at Ripley St Thomas Lancaster, a Church of England Academy. This is a special day for the School, as they celebrate their Founders’ Day with members of the Ripley Association and Governors attending a Eucharist, to be led by the Archbishop.
During his visit, the Archbishop is to meet and spend time with the Year 7 students in their house groups. He is to talk with them about the personal challenges they took on to complete the Young Leaders Award, a school-based programme developed by the Archbishop’s Youth Trust. These challenges range from welcoming new residents to an area or helping the elderly with their bins to raising hundreds of pounds through sales and sponsored events.
Luke, one of the Year 7 students at Ripley St Thomas, opted to help his local Foodbank as part of his personal challenge. Over a period of weeks and months, Luke built up five food parcels to help meet the needs of the Foodbank. Each parcel contained enough food and toiletries for three days each, and three meals per day. In all, Luke managed to get together fifty kilos of supplies.
The Archbishop of York said:
“I am looking forward to congratulating each student on their achievements. The Young Leaders Award provides students and staff with an opportunity to make a difference. Think for a moment about ‘Luke’ – not the Luke from the Gospels but the lesser known Luke from Morecambe! Luke is what you might call a very ‘normal’ young man. It’s not only amazing what Luke did for others, but in ten years’ time what will this mean to him as an individual? What will this training mean to him when he becomes a man, or a husband or a father? When you see in the New Year’s Honours List ‘Sir Luke of Morecambe’, then you will know that I was right about my Young Leaders Award – the potential is there”
Ripley St Thomas will also celebrate its founding day on 15 July 2013. The school began life as a Hospital with an endowed school founded in memory of Thomas Ripley, a local merchant. The school was built in 1864 by his widow Julia, to benefit his native town of Lancaster and those orphaned in Liverpool, where Thomas Ripley had made his fortune. For more information, visit: www.ripley.lancsngfl.ac.uk