Caring pupils at Bay Leadership Academy are spreading joy to vulnerable people in Morecambe as part of a special campaign of giving.

The school’s annual Festive Winter Gift Programme was launched this month to help raise funds and offer companionship to people experiencing hardship during the winter months.

Activities began with a reverse advent calendar where pupils were tasked with collecting items for the West End Food Bank. The scheme was introduced to help boost much needed donations to the foodbank during a period of high demand.

Pupils also created care packs and cards filled with meaningful messages to offer friendship to around 100 residents in local care and nursing homes. Key workers and vulnerable people, who receive help from the Salvation Army, were also given hampers filled with treats. In a gesture of solidarity and kindness, a magical winter carol concert was staged by pupils to inspire hope and spread joy amongst care home residents.

Alongside these activities, pupils and staff also created flapjacks and face masks for local residents and took part in a Reindeer Rush which raised more than £1,000 for St John’s Hospice.

For one week the school turned its kitchens over to pupils and staff so they could prepare 300 hot meals as part of Star Academies’ ‘Food For All Week’. During the hot meals drive, 29 schools in the Star Academies multi-academy trust distributed 50,000 food parcels and meals to those experiencing food poverty nationwide.

Colette Roberts, Principal at Bay Leadership Academy, told how this year the school’s Festive Winter Gift campaign was more important than ever.

She said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has meant that many people in our communities are suffering hardship.
“This might mean food or hygiene poverty, loneliness or even a sense of loss or despair. Our Festive Winter Gift campaign is a chance for our pupils to make a difference to those people and show them that they have not been forgotten.

“Now more than ever, it is vital that we draw together, in the spirit of the festive season to offer hope, companionship and comfort wherever we can.

“I am delighted by the effort and goodwill that has been shown by all our pupils, parents and staff and hope that we can continue to make a difference to vulnerable people living in our community.”