Year 8 students from the Petchey Academy took part in a First Give programme, winning £1,000 for Hackney Winter Night Shelter.

Students were asked to choose a social issue that they cared about and a charity that focuses on that issue.  Each class researched their chosen charity in detail.  The Year 8 cohort worked hard for two months, raising awareness and preparing a presentation to promote their local charity of choice.

The students who won the competition performed a poem on homelessness and a role play which showed how vulnerable people can easily fall into a cycle of homelessness.

As part of the students’ research, representatives from Hackney Winter Night Shelter paid a visit to the Academy to explain the work of the night shelter.

Amy Thurgood, the Academy's Religious Studies teacher commented:  “The students were incredibly emotionally engaged with the work of the charity throughout. They seemed to understand it was a real and concerning issue in Hackney. Thanks so much for the great work you do and for inspiring our young people.”

Christina Ball, Shelter Manager said:  “We were delighted to receive this prize and would like to sincerely thank all of those students who took part so enthusiastically.  This money will go towards making sure that our night shelter guests are able to stay in a safe and welcoming place over the cold winter months.”

The competition was organised by First Give with the grant being provided by The Jack Petchey Foundation.

First Give work in partnership with secondary schools to help young people to give their time, tenacity and talents to improve their local communities

The Jack Petchey Foundation aims to inspire and motivate young people across London and Essex to do their best and reach their full potential.

Other charities in the competition were Child Poverty, Mind UK and Victim Support.  

Hackney Winter Night Shelter is a Hackney Doorways project. Registered Charity number 1139183 Company number 07064774
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