by Mrs Anderson, RE teacher
At St Thomas More Catholic High School we are committed to and passionate about helping our neighbours, whether they are local to us or part of our global community. Following recent events in Afghanistan, with the help of staff in school as well as many local businesses in the community, our Sixth Formers organised a fundraising event to raise money for all those who have had to flee their homes and take refuge with us here in the UK. The event took the form of a ‘Pop up shop’ and ‘Luxury tombola’ in the Events Suite at Whitley Bay Ice Rink; it was a real community effort, with students both past and present coming together, all to raise money for a cause close to the hearts of so many people.
The overwhelming success of the day raised a total of over £1800. This money has now been donated to helprefugees.org, with all remaining clothing parcelled up after the event and donated to St Vincent’s Centre Newcastle, who also help refugees. The success of the day wouldn’t have been possible without the generosity of so many local businesses, some of which are owned by ex students and of course our wonderful Sixth Formers.
‘A City by the Sea’, who very generously donated a huge amount of stock to be sold in the pop up shop, advertised the event on their social media account and received the following message from local serving RAF crewman Dan (shown in the background of the photo below): ‘Morning guys, I was part of the RAF crews involved in the evacuation. We saw some truly humbling and warming scenes through a time of fear and terror for these people. Just want to send a huge thank you to everyone involved in this including yourselves for extending this warmth. These people deserve safe shelter and a new start. As a fellow north easterner I’m incredibly proud of what you’re achieving here. Thank you!’
We are so proud of our Sixth Form team and so grateful to all of the local businesses who not only donated such amazing prizes but also helped us to raise positive awareness for those who need it most.