A group of SVP Mini Vinnies from St Mary’s Primary School in Hexham, Northumberland, have received the Speaker’s Award in recognition of their fundraising work for a local hospice.
Upon hearing about the valuable work being carried out by the Tynedale Hospice, and following a visit to the hospice to see the work first-hand, the Mini Vinnies decided to embark on a fundraising effort to support the hospice’s ‘Rainbow Room’ - a facility supporting bereaved children in particular. In need of additional resources such as story books, art materials and soft furnishings, to enable children to be supported in a warm, welcoming and secure environment, the group organised a creative series of school-wide sponsored events to help raise money.
In total the group raised £844. Hospice director Alison Hands said: “The St Mary’s SVP Mini Vinnies are a superb example of young people working together to make a difference in the community in which they and their families live. They form the next generation of our society which is increasingly dependent on the goodwill of others.”
The hospice was so delighted by the children’s commitment and dedication to this self-initiated project that they wrote to the local MP, Guy Opperman, to say how proud and grateful they were to these young school pupils. As a result, the school was encouraged to enter the National Speaker’s School Council Award, which recognises young people who work together to inspire others or make a difference. The SVP Mini Vinnies were entered and won!
The children were invited to visit the House of Commons to collect their award, and were given a tour of the Palace of Westminster. They were presented with their trophy by MP Valerie Vaz in the Speaker’s Apartments.