Volunteering is an important feature of a Shrewsbury education
We are keen that Salopians develop a genuine sense of social responsibility whilst at school, and this will remain with them as they go out into the world beyond our gates.
Students take the lead through house-based and whole-school fundraising activity as we support a wide range of charitable causes close to home, nationally and internationally. Time is also built into our weekly routines for service and volunteering, with many co- curricular opportunities to contribute to the local community with long-established projects working alongside new ones as need arises. In many cases new projects spring from the initiative, enthusiasm and commitment of our students.
Through fundraising for charities, service and volunteering our community is engaged in a wide range of activities including:
- Pupils and staff with The Shewsy raised money for Medic Malawi (ahead of a proposed visit in 2020)
- The Royal Shrewsbury School Hunt (RSSH) Running Club raised funds for an orphanage in Kenya as part of ‘Restart Kenya’, which they then visited during their Africa Tour in December 2019
- Undertaking additional fundraising activities for 25 charities, raising £64,000 in 2019/20. Activities included:
- Half-marathon – Salopian Community Team
- Non-uniform days
- All-night activity challenge for Medic Malawi
- Art Exhibitions
- Music Concerts
- Chapel Collections
- Thursday afternoon volunteering (c40 students) in local primary schools, charity shops, care homes, hospitals and other medical contexts
- Global Social Leaders – Refugee Homework Club, Elderly Tea Party, Foodbank Christmas Fair, Frailty Ward Christmas visit, Books2Africa
- Third Form activity programme called ‘Base’ where all pupils visit the local Food Bank Plus
- Sports Leaders – Fourth and Fifth Form pupils supporting sport in Primary Schools
- Working with Church Stretton Parish Council on the Conservation project at Coppice Leashows Meadow
- Duke of Edinburgh award scheme activities Third Form Outdoor Week – pupils
- working at The Shewsy, and conservation
- work for Shropshire Council and Shropshire Wildlife Trust
- ‘Concert Party’ – 14 students visit care homes, local hospital and primary schools to play music and sing
Benefits and Impact
Our community of pupils and staff have raised money for many charities:
2019-20: £68,000.00 Medic Malawi Trip
2018-19: £35,000.00 (Low number as no Half Marathon)
2017-18: £75,757.00 Medic Malawi Trip
2016-17: £128,000.00 Walk for Shewsy
2015-16: £57,000.00 Medic Malawi Trip
Illustrating the impact of contribution to teacher training:
"I just wanted to say how impressed I was yesterday with you all. Your interaction with the Refugees was outstanding and you all did a great job."
Amanda Jones, ‘Shropshire Supports Refugees’
"In the morning, we went to Woodfield infant school, where we got the opportunity to work alongside younger kids. As expected, it was very different from volunteering in an elderly care home. The classroom I was in had children aged 5 to 6. They were all very energetic and playful kids, constantly talking , some of them were screaming or crying. Despite it being so chaotic, the teachers were able to maintain control in the classroom. 3-D shapes were being taught on the day, and I got to build some models of 3-D shapes with the kids. They were smarter than I expected, and managed to pick up some of the harder shapes that I asked them. During break time, I ran around the playground with some of the kids in the class. They were all very happy I’d talk to them and play with them, and it was equally enjoyable for me as well."
Lower Sixth volunteer
"It was a pleasure to have your students. I’ve had really positive feedback from all the staff they worked with."
Deputy Head, Woodfield School
"This is the second academic year that we have had 2 students on placement with us at the Barnabas Community 360 project which also includes the Foodbank plus.
The main aim is to provide students some insight as to what services the project offers to clients. They include not only the Foodbank but a garden and woodwork group, a 6 week cookery course, walking group, debt advise and a programme helping clients to get back into work which includes computer skills advice, applying for jobs, interview techniques and each person has a mentor.
The students on placement work alongside clients from Easter onwards in the gardening project and outdoor activities and from September help with the newly formed Cosy Club where clients who are usually isolated come to an informal group to chat, have tea and cakes and do some sort of activity/hobby which the students have started to plan themselves. The students have also helped out in the food bank and sorting out suitable clothes for clients to have to attend interviews.
The students have made a valuable contribution to the project, are always enthusiastic, relate well with clients and adapt to the different activities. Most of all the clients are always pleased to see and chat to them."
Jacqui Blanchard, Barnabas Community 360 Project
"I am pleased to give feedback on the young ladies who have visited our residents on Thursday’s throughout term time.
Jennifer, Kaitlyn and Emilie have been a real asset during their visits. It is not easy to keep up to 14 residents, all of varying personalities, entertained so they are to be congratulated for their efforts.
The role they are allowed to play within the home can be limiting but that has not stopped them from creating a positive atmosphere and throwing themselves into activities during their visits.
I have received only positive feedback from the staff and feel that you can be quite proud of the way in which each of the young ladies represent the school.
Our residents value any contact that they have outside the home and Jennifer, Kaitlyn and Emilie have no problem sitting, one to one, and chatting, which can be daunting for young people sometimes, but all three young ladies have taken it in their stride.
Whatever chosen career path they take after school I have no doubt they will be happy and successful."
Sandra Robinson, Senior Administrator/Placement Coordinator
"They are polite, welcoming and supportive towards the children when reading with them. They follow task instructions and ask appropriate questions around the story they are sharing. It has been beneficial to all children having this additional reading support."
Mount Pleasant School
"Today’s session at Briarfields was quite eventful. We went around the care home surveying the residents about their life and Briarfields, it was clear to see that everyone had different personalities as some residents were much more talkative than others. They all had similar views towards the care home but most of them had the desire for more entertainment services. I very much enjoyed talking to all the residents as they were all very friendly and willing to engage with us. The staff at Briarfields have also been very helpful in getting
us settled in and making sure that we know our way around the house. They have also directed us to have short chats with different people of different backgrounds, I found that it was very interesting talking to all the different residents about their lives."
Lower Sixth volunteer
We will be continuing to grow our support for charities, services and volunteering through:
- Incorporating even more volunteering, service and charity work more into our Thursday activity programme, to ensure greater year group / whole year group participation
- Increasing the scope of our Thursday activities programme across all year groups to support more local services and charities
- All school boarding houses will have a nominated charity or service project