Each spring at St Helen’s the school charity is chosen by a whole school vote and fundraising takes place throughout the subsequent year. 2018 saw a wonderful variety of initiatives overseen by the School’s Sixth Form charity reps: the Junior Easter Egg hunt; members of staff running the London Marathon and doing a sponsored cycle ride to Paris; Lower Sixth’s sponsored Abingdon parkrun; the Year 10 charity dinner; a Fireworks Ball organised by the Parents’ Associations of both St Helen’s and Abingdon School; and of course St Kate’s Day, a celebration of the School’s traditions and community but also an opportunity for the whole school to fundraise as one.
Christine Brown, Community Partnership Manager at Mercy Ships received a cheque from the charity reps in a special presentation assembly: “A big thank you to every one of you, students, staff and the Parents’ Association. This fundraising will make such a difference to transforming lives in Africa. So far in Guinea we have performed over 1,160 surgeries and our dental team has treated over 4,000 patients. This work is only made possible by the wonderful people who volunteer on the ship and by the generosity of schools like St Helen’s who have joined the Mercy Ships family.”
The fundraising total was given a final push by the charity reps, who on the morning of the presentation grouped together to give an extra £25 to push the previous total of £18,975.44 over the £19,000 mark.
Headmistress Mrs Dougall gave a vote of thanks to Mercy Ships themselves, saying that “fundraising for charities teaches students valuable lessons in humanity and respect. It has been a pleasure and a privilege to support Mercy Ships this year.”