St Hugh's has a long tradition of involvement in the local community, and the school continues to enjoy strong links with both Buckland Church and Buckland Church of England Primary School, as well as supporting a wide range of local, national and international charities throughout the year.
We aim to help pupils think about the ways in which people can make a positive difference to local, national and global issues and to draw attention to the characteristics of those people and organisations who do make such a difference. We encourage the children to appreciate how fortunate we are within our school community, raising awareness of those who are in need, and giving pupils opportunities to think of ways of supporting those less fortunate.
Charity Update 2018-2019
Over the last year we have been delighted to donate over £7,000 to the Mulberry Bush School in Standlake. Mulberry Bush is a local charity providing a safe home and school for severely traumatised primary aged children. Thirty one children from across England and Wales are looked after by 100 staff and can be accommodated at school for 38 weeks a year. Mulberry Bush have been fundraising most recently to build a further residential house, where some children will be able to stay safely for 52 weeks a year. We have supported Mulberry Bush both financially, through our fundraising, and in practical ways. In addition to the donation above, our most recent St Hugh's Book Fair raised just over £1,000 for Mulberry Bush to spend on new books for their library.
We delivered the proceeds of our Harvest Festival services to the Abingdon Food Bank and to the Oxford Food Bank and we continue to work closely with the Oxford Food Bank throughout the year, including supporting their Christmas collections. The children thoroughly enjoyed supporting the charity 'Yound Minds' in their 'Hello Yellow' Day initiative in the autumn term and we are delighted to continue to support the annual Poppy Appeal and our local Benefice Christmas Collection.
St Hugh's pupils play an active part in our fundraising activities. Each of the four school Houses adopt a charity for the year and each term the children will take part in fundraising events to raise money for their chosen charities.
In addition to our local and national partnerships, we have developed relationships with organisations working across the globe. Most recently, our Year 7 and 8 girls donated over £7,000 to 'Sport for Life' in Barbados, during their netball tour in October and spent a day with pupils who benefit from the support of this charity at the Kensington Oval Cricket Ground in Barbados. Our Year 7 and 8 boys are about to start fundraising to support this charity, during their cricket tour to Barbados in Summer 2019.
Over the last few years we have also been supporting a group of ten primary schools in the Rift Valley, Kenya. The opportunity to work so closely, and with a such direct impact, has been made possible because former pupil, Rachel Owen, is a trustee of the charity HSK (Harambee Schools Kenya). The generous support of St Hugh’s staff, parents and pupils has enabled three new, well-stocked and much used libraries to be opened, over 100 new desks (each seating four children) to be purchased and the provision of new writing materials, clothing, shoes and sports equipment for over 250 children.
Three St Hugh’s members of staff were recently seconded to the Rift Valley to develop teaching facilities and to share their expertise with the schools, and we are currently supporting the training of a fully-qualified teacher, named Geoffrey, for Cedar School.