Between 7pm on Friday 10th and 7am on Saturday 11th November 2017, forty-seven Arthur Terry students across all year groups as well as supervising staff, braved the elements to raise awareness of the rising issue of homelessness and those working families needing emergency food bank assistance.
After watching a film in the hall upon arrival, students were allocated one of four mini ‘pod’ communities were they began to put down their roots for the night. Having made their cardboard boxes homely (one had curtains whilst another had a water bottle shelf!), students participated in a range of fun team events that included parachute games, ninja cannons, creative Christmas card making and a ‘build your own chocolate biscuit’ stall!
Midnight and lights out came round very quickly and I am please to say the students respected one another and settled down to attempt some zzzzz’s! The 6.15am alarm roused some sleepy eyes and sore shoulders but one and all had a fabulous time supporting such an important cause.
The brave students were Molly Brook, Amy Grainger, Matt Wood, Marcus Harrington, Reece Mann, Nick Jakovenko, Sarah Stamps Butt, Megan Houghton, Matt Cotter, Yasmine Price, Jenna Staples, Sam Warwick, Vivienne Fenton, Osayd Abushoke, Eleni Milasz, Annabel Garbutt, Olivia Jones, Bradley White, Will Cole, Helaina Jones, Ethan Keene, Yusuf Aslam, Onora Lee, Solomon Goodreid, Joss Amiss, Rachel Leavesley, Faith Hills, Faith Melvin, Evie Howell, Eve Asson, Jessica Foulds, Isla Bell, Jake Gore and Jasmine Johnson.
Supervising staff who generously gave up their Friday evenings were Mr Brierley, Mrs Cooper, Mr Chaplin, Mrs Shakeshaft, Mr Ball, Mr Hughes, Miss Coutts, Miss Day, Miss Morgan, Miss Parton and Miss Standring.
A huge thanks to Mark Amyes, Managing Director at Jaffa Box who kindly donated the cardboard boxes that students were able to personalise and so too a big thanks to Julie and her Chartwells canteen team who provided hot water flasks, cups and some midnight snacks!
Now the challenge remains for Arthur Terry tutor groups to each fill a bag for life full of bathroom products including shower gel, shampoo, conditioner, soap, bath bombs, bubble bath, sanitary products and the like, that will all go to a local food bank to support families in crisis.
Long after these valuable donations are gratefully used, students and staff will remember a little of what it must be like to live without a safe space to call home, will remain mindful of those less fortunate than ourselves and perhaps a little bit more content with what we enjoy each night!