On Friday 4 November 2022, Lucy Goodway from Edward’s Trust in Birmingham, and Revd Jeremy Allcock from St Martin’s Youth & Community Centre, will attend an assembly at The Blue Coat School Birmingham, to receive the final cheques from the charity fundraising efforts throughout the School’s 300th anniversary year.
Each charity will receive a cheque for over £16,000.
The money has been raised by pupils of all ages from the school, staff, parents and the local community through events such as a Sportathon where families raced a 5-kilometre relay around the School site in an array of fancy dress from dinosaurs to sumo wrestlers to Harry Potter!
The children also hosted non-school uniform days, a ‘Pre-Prep Big Walk’ where the children from Nursery to Year 2 did a sponsored walk around the school; a Parents Golf Day at Edgbaston Golf Club and raffles at events with generously donated prizes from local businesses in Harborne and Edgbaston. Every event encompassed the whole community in fundraising for two incredible causes close to The Blue Coat School’s heart.
Headmaster, Noel Neeson said:
‘I am very proud of the fundraising efforts from the Blue Coat Family this year. To be able to give such large sums to both charities is the perfect way to celebrate 300 years of The Blue Coat School, which was, of course, founded by The Reverend William Higgs as a charity school in 1722 for the poorest children in Birmingham.’
One of the highlight events for the School’s fundraising was the Tercentenary Lunch in July. Denise Lewis OBE attended as a special guest presenter, shortly before she assumed her position as Commonwealth Games England President for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. Lewis was touched by the work of Edward’s Trust and St. Martin’s Youth & Community Centre, making a very generous donation herself.
The four Houses at the School hosted two charity days which raised a combined total of £22,000. Charity days are a huge occasion for the School each year, but were particularly special in 2022 during the tercentenary year. On Charity Days, children are encouraged to bring money into School for donations; a food, drink and games fayre during break times and cake sales.
St George’s and St Philip’s Houses were raising money for St Martin’s Youth Centre in the heart of the Highgate area of Birmingham. It was set up in 1957 to provide a safe and happy place for local young people. It offers them friendship and compassion, trusted adults to talk to and a myriad of activities, including crafting, cooking, camping and outdoor adventures.
The money raised by the boys of St Philip’s and St George’s will help to fund summer holiday schemes (including a camping trip to Malvern) and the hope is to extend these to weekend provision too. It will also go towards the refurbishment of their kitchens, to enable more young people to learn to cook.
St Margaret’s and St Monica’s Houses were raising money for Edward’s Trust, a local charity which works to help families cope with bereavement. The girls worked very hard on their assembly which included performances of The Good Samaritan and ‘Let’s Go Fly A Kite’. The assembly also got to see a behind-the-scenes video of the children baking the cakes which would later be sold at the cake sale.
Lucy Goodway from Edward’s Trust said:
‘We felt very privileged when Blue Coat chose Edward’s Trust to be one of the charities for their Centenary year celebrations. We are very local to the school and we offer specialist bereavement support to families facing loss and surviving bereavement, and have been doing so for 33 years. It was wonderful to be part of the celebrations and the passion and dedication from both staff and students from the school was awe-inspiring.’