In the lead up to the festive period, students in Year 8 were encouraged to fully immerse themselves in the community spirit of Mount St Mary’s and offer their support for those less fortunate than themselves at Christmas time. In collaboration with the charity spokesperson, students further explored the history of St Gemma’s Hospice and the valued work that they carry out daily in the local community.
Students from each Year 8 form group were selected to develop and deliver an assembly to their peers and raise awareness around some of the hardships faced by families and the care and comfort that is offered by this foundation to cater for their needs and enrich lives. They explored the impact of the counselling sessions and palliative care that is offered alongside the research that is being carried out to inform teaching that will serve to improve and ensure the longevity of the services available.
This year we have endeavoured to strengthen the link between the school and St Gemma’s Hospice and are extremely grateful for the time that has been dedicated by our link representative from the charity. Her visit to our school gave her the opportunity to experience the ethos of Mount St Mary’s in action and witness the appreciation that our young people have for our shared vision. We would like to thank Stephanie for her active support. Working with such a visible and extremely positive external representative is invaluable when trying to encourage students to invest in a cause and actively contribute.
On 15th December, a select cohort of students went into Leeds City Centre to collect money on behalf of St Gemma’s Hospice in a display of Retribuam that warmed the hearts of many passers-by in the local community. Many individuals stopped to share their personal stories related to their own experiences of the care provided to loved ones by St Gemma’s Hospice, giving our students a real-life insight into the motivation behind the event. Their work was recognised by the local Krispy Kreme Donut store who saw our students collecting near their shop and came outside to give each individual a free donut as a thanks for their efforts to support such a worthy cause. This further helped our students to appreciate the impact that their acts of kindness and efforts to seize opportunities to give back can have on others.
By the end of the day, Year 8 students had managed to raise a total of £1355 on behalf of the charity, which can now be used to fund vital care in our community. We could not be prouder of the enthusiasm, maturity and passion shown by the students involved and look forward to working closely with St Gemma’s Hospice in the near future.