A small group of just five Year 5 and Year 6 pupils at St Mary’s C of E School in Truro, Cornwall, managed to achieve big things when they took part in the KS2 Archbishops’ Young Leaders Award (AYLA).
From cooking meals for their families and donating toys to their local hospice to collecting food for the foodbank and donating clothes to charity, the pupils thought hard about how they could be of service to others and ‘be the change’ they wanted to see in their community. One thoughtful pupil even invented a new challenge, to say five kind things to someone every hour.
“They all benefited from the inspiring sessions and the teamwork challenges. They gained a lot of confidence in their own abilities and in being able to express their thoughts about things.” Laura Sampson, HLTA
Following the AYLA classroom session that explores some national charities working to support vulnerable people in the community, the pupils decided they wanted to host a charity fair to showcase the charities they were passionate about supporting. Pupils chose charities they had been personally impacted by, and even got the rest of their Year 6 class and RE leaders from Years 4 and 5 involved. They planned the whole event with 16 different stalls representing the charities chosen by the children: St John Ambulance, British Red Cross, Dementia Uk, The Seal Sanctuary, Hoofbeats, Diabetes UK/JDRF, Porthtowan Surf Lifesaving Club, Surfers Against Sewage, WWF/K9 Crusaders, Prickles and Paws, Shelterbox, Great Ormond Street Hospital, RSPCA, Truro Foodbank and Christian Aid. The event raised nearly £500 for their chosen charities.
"I do a lot more kind things for my neighbours and people I see." Amelie, Year 5/6 Pupil
The children's charity fair also encouraged others to get involved as parents and the wider school and church community heard about their efforts and were inspired by the children’s passion to make a difference to the charitable causes they care about.
For their final community action project, pupils worked with local park rangers to help resurface a section of the pathway in one of the wildlife reserves close to the school. One of the pupils, who is a member of the school running club that uses the path, managed to get running club and eco club members to join in with their efforts. The whole group spent the afternoon at the wildlife reserve transporting wheelbarrow loads of bark to use on the paths and cutting and weaving willow to create new fences by the riverbank.