Whole School Community Initiative
Please click on the section below titled ‘Why we applied for this award’ to read our award submission statement for the Whole School Community Initiative Award.
You can also click on the images below to view interactive submission documents for each of the community projects that we undertook during 2020 with our partners Thomas Franks, Nightsafe, and the NHS and Youth Action UK. Within each document we have outlined the initiative undertaken and also included links to web/press articles, video clips and any additional information within the pages.
Thank you for taking the time to review our submission!
Whole-School Community Initiative Award
In a time when community and charity mean more than ever before, Westholme has risen in the face of these challenges with a kindness and generosity that has touched the lives of countless people within our local community. From donating much-needed food and equipment to ensuring the continued safety and support of vulnerable young people, Westholme is proud to have extended a helping hand to keep our community afloat.
In April 2020, Westholme partnered with our school caterers Thomas Franks to provide hot meals for the vulnerable members of our community. We were able to raise around £20,000 for the cause, with the help of donations from local organisations, meaning that 10,100 meals could be provided to those in need in the area. Due to school closures, we were able to offer our secondary school site as a base for the initiative, lending our kitchen and all catering resources to the effort, which enabled Thomas Franks to produce meals more efficiently and on a much larger scale. Thanks to the hard work of our catering staff, most of whom had been furloughed but volunteered to help the cause for free, we were also able to deliver 750 hot meals weekly to local youth organisations.
The generosity of our staff did not end there, with many putting together fresh fruit hampers to deliver to frontline workers in the North West Ambulance Station and Age UK, as well as Nightsafe, a local charity committed to alleviating the struggles of homeless and vulnerably housed young people in Blackburn with Darwen. We were also able to make donations of chalk to the charity, which enabled their homeschooled children to draw rainbows in support of the NHS, as well as flags of the world to learn multi-lingual phrases. Westholme students of all ages also took part in a ‘Sleep In’, where they were encouraged to spend a night out of the comfort of their beds in order to raise money for Nightsafe. This event helped raise £2,131 for the charity which equated to 53 safe beds for the vulnerable young people of our community.
In an initiative started by Westholme’s Design & Technology teacher Mr Jonathan Walker, the school designed and produced visors and mask clips to combat the lack of PPE available to the NHS. Thanks to the combined resources of other local secondary schools, we were also able to provide essential equipment to frontline staff at Burnley General Hospital. News of this initial donation snowballed on social media and the school became inundated with pleas for equipment from other healthcare organisations. This exposure meant that we were able to provide tailored equipment to a broader range of essential workers, overall donating over 2250 items of PPE to frontline staff that desperately needed it.
These actions epitomise the core values of Westholme, and we are very proud of every member of our staff who, in a global pandemic, worked to enrich the lives of over 15,000 people in our precious local community.