Our Young Leaders Awards for KS1 and KS2 are all about celebrating leadership and empowering pupils to make a difference to their local communities and to ‘be the change they want to see’.
Social action projects to reach out to people in need or to support charities or causes often involve physically meeting people or bringing groups of people together. So, when the Covid-19 pandemic hit our Young Leaders were faced with a challenge to do things differently.
We have been delighted to see how our schools and Young Leaders have been flexible in their thinking, adapted their plans and despite the restrictions of the pandemic have really made a difference to the lives of others in tangible ways.
KS2 pupils from Silver Tree Primary School and Nursery responded directly to a need within their own school community. Due to the impact of Covid on some of the families in their school, pupils set up a 'Food Bag Friday' scheme where families can request food parcels. The Young Leaders helped to put them together ready to be collected using donations from parents and local shops. They also researched positive and encouraging quotes to accompany the bags to spread some positivity.
“It is good to help people when they need it most.”
“They have a real sense of community and how to help those in need. The children showed determination to succeed and make a difference to the lives of other people.”
Emma Peverall (YLA Teacher)
Pupils from Annfield Plain Infant School took part in our KS1 Award this year. The pupils chose to make a link with their local care home. They were concerned about the older people feeling lonely especially during the pandemic.
Two pupils rang the care home to ask if they would like to become friends with the class. The pupils dropped off handmade cards and visited and stood outside to wave through the window. To continue this link pupils also recorded songs from their socially distanced Nativity and sent it to the care home to watch along with Christmas presents. The pupils hope to be able to meet their older friends soon.
“The care home are delighted to work with us and it will strengthen community links. The children have learned such a lot and readily show kindness and respect for others. They show more empathy towards the older generation.”
Katherine Clayson (YLA Teacher)
KS1 pupils from Esh C of E (Aided) Primary School wanted to spread some cheer so decided to plant a sunflower for each family in their school community and send a message to them all about how special the community is and the need for togetherness and kindness.
This activity allowed the children to reflect on the past year and the difficulties faced. It reinforced that they are an important part of their community and small gestures can have a huge impact on people. The school received many comments from the community about what a lovely idea it was and how much the gesture was appreciated.
“I now know I can make a difference.”
“I think the children have gained a greater understanding of how their actions can affect other people. They have also realised that they are part of a wider community, and they have a role to play in it. The children have also recognised that even small actions can have a significant impact.”
Kaye Wilson (YLA Teacher)
These stories and others like them really do show just how important it is to take action in small ways and bigger ways to bring positive change to communities we belong to. These KS1 and KS2 young leaders give us a wonderful example to follow.