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THE ROYAL BRITISH LEGION INTRODUCES LIVE LESSONS TO ITS NEW REMEMBRANCE RESOURCES FOR SCHOOLS

The RBL’s latest teaching materials include two brand new live lessons – a poetry project with spoken word poet Tomos Roberts and a special Live Remembrance Assembly for schools

The charity has also added to its existing range of Remembrance lesson plans, assemblies and bitesize activities

The Royal British Legion, together with the National Literacy Trust, has launched a new range of free teaching resources to help children in Key Stages 1-5 understand the importance of Remembrance and its relevance today.

The charity is encouraging teachers to register their interest in two exciting new live learning opportunities – the Alive with Poppies poetry project taking place from 3rd – 6th October, and the Live Remembrance Assembly on the 11th November. Using his specially commissioned poem for the Festival of Remembrance last year as inspiration, renowned poet Tomos Roberts will be delivering four virtual lessons helping children plan, create and perform their own Remembrance poetry. The Live Remembrance Assembly on Armistice Day, co-produced by the National Literacy Trust, will be an interactive live stream for Key Stage 2 classes, exploring why we remember through poetry and music and bringing children across the country together for the Two Minute Silence.

This year the resources will explore the theme of ‘service,’ highlighting the role of the civilian emergency services, the work of the intelligence services, and the service provided by our Armed Forces. During times of conflict or national emergency, service can also include a wider group of people, for example, the thousands of volunteers that supported the NHS during the Covid pandemic. The teaching resources will help explore what service means, the backgrounds of those who serve, and the impact it has on them and their families.

The Royal British Legion’s Remembrance Lead, Philippa Rawlinson, says:

“The live lessons for schools are an innovative addition to RBL’s new range of materials to help teachers show the next generation why it is important to remember those who serve. Understanding our shared heritage of Remembrance helps bring communities together and ensures we recognise the service and sacrifice of past and present generations. These new resources will help us ensure Remembrance is understood by and available to all children in every community in the UK.”

Fay Lant, Head of School Programmes at the National Literacy Trust, says:

“We are so proud to be partnering with the Royal British Legion for Remembrance. The new live lessons will provide a creative, interactive way for children to learn about the importance of Remembrance whilst also improving their literacy skills. Combined with the updated resources, activities and lesson plans, schools across the country will be able to get involved with Remembrance and explore the theme of service. We look forward to working closely with the Legion to produce these events and activities and help children understand the relevance of Remembrance in the modern day.”

The RBL is committed to passing the torch of Remembrance to the next generation, ensuring that children have a comprehensive understanding of what Remembrance is and why it is relevant to their lives today. As time passes since the Second World War, when a generation experienced conflict first-hand, the RBL aims to teach children to appreciate how today’s Armed and civilian services continue to defend our democratic freedoms and way of life. Designed to engage children through poetry, music and art, these resources will help pupils discover how Remembrance traditions have evolved and how they might grow and change in the future.

The Royal British Legion’s free Teaching Remembrance resources can be downloaded on the RBL’s website:  www.rbl.org.uk/teachingremembrance.

To register interest in the Alive with Poppies Poetry Workshops or the Schools Festival of Remembrance, email remembrance@britishlegion.org.uk  

The latest Teaching Remembrance Resources include:

  • Alive With Poppies Poetry Workshops, 3rd – 6th October

Four virtual lessons, supported by digital resources, and delivered with poet Tomos Roberts. Children will use the original poem ‘Alive with Poppies’ as inspiration for their own Remembrance poetry.

  • Live Remembrance Assembly Friday 11th November 10.30-11.05am co-produced with the NLT

The interactive live streamed Remembrance Assembly will explore the meaning of Remembrance through poetry and music and bring KS2 school children across the country together for the Two Minute Silence.

  • School Assemblies (KS1-5)

The new versions of our extremely popular annual assemblies, which focus this year on how we can remember by exploring service – who serves, how they serve and why they serve. Case studies, photography and film provide examples of the different types of service that keep us safe.

  • Cadet Unit Meeting Assemblies (Navy, Army, RAF, Police, Fire & Ambulance)

Using the KS1-5 School Assembly format we create tailored resources for each of the Cadet sections, pitched to a KS3 age range. Using case studies and images from their own Cadet Sections, children explore Service and Remembrance.

  • KS2-3 Service Class Lessons – These are school-style class lessons which provide children with an understanding of Service and Remembrance.
  • KS2-3 Bitesize Activities – These are quick and engaging short activities helping children to understand different aspects of Remembrance and their links to Service in ‘bitesize’ sessions.

 

For further information please contact:

 

Emily Prestidge, PR Officer, The Royal British Legion: 07458 021735 /

eprestidge@britishlegion.org.uk

Wesleyan Foundation donates £11,000 to Evolve

The charity Evolve, which works with young people across the UK to improve their emotional and physical wellbeing, has received a donation of £11,000 from the Wesleyan Foundation to continue its life-changing work with vulnerable students.

 

The donation – from the Wesleyan Foundation, the charitable arm of financial services mutual Wesleyan – will help to support and nurture the development of 50 pupils through the final terms of the academic year by providing extra mentoring, health and classroom support.

Anglesey Primary and The Oaks Primary will also benefit from a specialist health mentor, who will be on site five days a week to work with selected pupils and provide a one-to-one mentoring service.

 

Evolve works with an average of 1,350 children every year across six different UK regions, and 65% of pupils at risk of falling out of training, education or employment have stayed in education as a result of the charity’s work. Last year it provided 45 health mentors to schools across the UK and managed to help reduce school expulsions by 50% and close the wellbeing gap for disadvantaged students.

Nathan Wallis, Chief of Staff at Wesleyan, said: “Evolve is an incredible charity that is transforming children’s lives through its mentoring and wellbeing support programme.

“As a mutual, it is part of our ethos to give back to the communities and organisations that matter to our members and we’re proud to support the organisation’s incredibly valuable work through the Wesleyan Foundation.”

Lewis Griffiths, Business Development Manager at Evolve said: “Since we started Evolve in 2003, we’ve had the privilege of working with hundreds of schools and thousands of children up and down the UK and have seen just how valuable mentoring and coaching can be.

“We want to continue transforming the lives of pupils across the country and we are immensely appreciative of Wesleyan Foundation for their donation which will enable us to further our work at two schools and provide one-to-one mentoring to a not only 50 of the direct individuals but also benefit the entirety of the school through our on site activities. Organisations like Wesleyan make such a difference to society and help to build better futures for the most vulnerable pupils, along with our partnering schools, we can’t thank them enough! ”

In 2017 Wesleyan, the financial services mutual, launched the Wesleyan Foundation as part of their commitment to supporting great causes that are important to their members and the communities in which they live and work.

The Foundation has since donated £4.3m and has supported over 100,000 people across 500 different groups.

Wesleyan provides 150,000 breakfasts to children and young people with £21,000 donation

IMAGE: GINGER PIXIE PHOTOGRAPHY 

The charity, Magic Breakfast, is set to provide an additional 150,000 breakfasts this summer thanks to a £21,000 match-funded donation from the Wesleyan Foundation. 

 

Magic Breakfast works with over 1,000 schools in disadvantaged areas of the UK to ensure no child is too hungry to learn. They offer free, healthy breakfasts daily to over 200,000 pupils and provide expert support to schools, giving children and young people at risk of hunger a healthy meal each morning.

 

Research by the Institute of Fiscal Studies has shown that pupils in primary school receiving a nutritious ‘magic breakfast’ boosted their attainment at KS1 by an average of two months’ additional progress over the course of a year, compared to children in schools with no such provision.  Alongside this, 94% of Magic Breakfast partner schools report that breakfast provision has a positive impact on energy levels and boosts concentration, and 93% report increased readiness to learn.

 

Nathan Wallis, Chief of Staff at Wesleyan, said: “Getting a good education is so important but sadly many pupils go to school hungry, which hampers their learning and development.

 

“Magic Breakfast is a wonderful charity that seeks to address this issue and provides children across the country with breakfasts to help them start each day ready to tackle the challenges ahead.

 

“As a mutual it’s important to us that we give back to communities and support the charities that matter to our members and customers, many of whom are teachers. At our AGM our members voted to support Magic Breakfast, a charity that closely aligns with our values. We are proud to have been able to provide it with funding and hope it will make a real difference to the school experience for many pupils.”

 

Catherine Mackenzie, Head of Corporate Partnerships at Magic Breakfast, said: “The current cost-of-living crisis is really stretching family finances, and this is sadly having a knock-on effect on the number of children and young people at risk of going to school hungry. When a child is hungry, they cannot learn, and this impacts their education and life chances. That’s why it’s imperative we continue our work to ensure no child is too hungry to learn.

 

“We are incredibly grateful to Wesleyan Foundation for their generous donation which will enable us to provide free, nutritious breakfasts to more pupils across the UK, giving many more pupils the chance to reach their full potential.”

 

In 2017 Wesleyan launched the Wesleyan Foundation as part of their commitment to supporting great causes that are important to their members and the communities in which they live and work.

 

The Foundation has since donated £4.3m and has supported more than 100,000 people across 500 different charities, community groups and social enterprises, benefitting thousands of people across the UK.

 

A culture of disclosure: Why more young people are speaking out about childhood abuse

This article was written by Gabrielle Shaw, CEO, National Association for People Abused in Childhood. NAPAC is a national, UK charity offering support to adult survivors of all types of childhood abuse, including physical, sexual, emotional abuse or neglect. 

 

Gabrielle has led NAPAC since April 2015, she is a senior INGO executive with over 16 years’ leadership, policy and strategic decision-making achievements across charity, government and statutory sectors. 

 

 

Over the past 18 months, the National Association for People Abused in Childhood has encountered an unprecedented and sustained increase in the number of younger survivors contacting us for support. 

 

With each passing week more young adults aged 18 and over are calling and emailing to speak out about the abuse they suffered as children. One in three callers to our support line is under the age of 35, up from less than one in five as of September 2019, and those aged under 25 now account for almost one in five (18%) of our website users, an 8% increase from September 2019. 

 

Granted, it can be difficult to evidence the average time taken to disclose childhood abuse, however, several studies conducted over the past decade indicate that it is likely between 15 and 24 years. 

 

The Blue Knot foundation’s research into child sexual abuse found that on average it took survivors 24 years to disclose, whilst a 2016 study from Steine et al concluded this figure to be between 17 and 24 years. Even in a relatively small cohort of 18-24 year olds, the NSPCC estimated it took more than seven years for them to speak out about sexual abuse

 

Though the subject matter is difficult and the statistics overwhelming, I am heartened that our data indicates survivors are disclosing earlier in life. This will enable them to work through their trauma and begin recovery at a younger age. 

 

But the question remains, why are we seeing this shift now? 

 

Below I have outlined some of the possible reasons behind the increase in young people speaking out about childhood abuse.

 

 

Lockdown: Reflection and Isolation

 

Devoid of the usual distractions of everyday life, lockdown for many provided a forced period of reflection. 

 

In the case of survivors, the prolonged period of isolation may have led to them confronting their past abuse. It is no coincidence that Bessel van der Kolk’s revolutionary book on trauma, ‘The Body Keeps the Score’ has spent the last 54 weeks on the New York Times’s bestseller list, indicating that practitioners, survivors and the general public are seeking to better understand the treatment of trauma.

 

As a direct result of stringent UK lockdown restrictions, between April and June 2020, the National Domestic Abuse Helpline experienced a 65% increase in calls, compared to the previous three months. It is logical then, to suggest that younger survivors still living near their abusers at this time may have felt the need to report the abuse under the strain of a sustained period sharing a home with their abuser. 

 

The other side of this coin is that those living away from their abusers, for example, in a university setting, will have had breathing room to reflect on past trauma, possibly with better access to support than they would have had at home. 

 

 

The kids are alright: Millennials and Gen-Z pushing mental health reform

 

Although often wrongly criticised for their ‘snowflake’ attitudes, over the past decade young people have contributed significantly to the creation of a culture in which mental health is openly discussed. 

 

Movements such as the FA’s ‘Heads up’ campaign, Young Minds’ ‘Wise Up’ campaign and the birth of the Movember foundation have made huge strides in removing the taboo around talking about mental health. Now, this ceremonial elimination of the taboo is shifting to incorporate survivors of abuse, childhood or otherwise. 

 

At the time of writing there are almost 55,000 testimonies from survivors on the Everyone’s Invited page. There is no doubt in my mind that the incredible work from Soma Sara, who instigated Everyone’s Invited, is one of the driving forces behind the higher rates of young adults disclosing abuse, and a positively evolving attitude to the discussion and treatment of childhood abuse. 

 

The increasing numbers of younger survivors disclosing abuse is a sign of progress, and though the ramifications of the lockdown and improving societal attitudes to mental health have led to increased disclosures amongst young people, there is still much work to be done in ensuring that all survivors are given the support they need.

 

 

Ecclesiastical Insurance Group launches the Movement for Good awards 2021

For the third year running, Ecclesiastical Insurance Group is giving away £1million to charities with the return of its Movement for Good awards.

From today, people can nominate an education charity close to their hearts for a potential £1,000 award to help make a difference. Last year an incredible 253,000 people submitted a nomination for their favourite charity.

This year, 500 charities will each receive £1,000 during the first phase of the campaign. A second phase of giving will happen later this summer.

Since the initiative began, the Movement for Good awards have given £2million to good causes across the nation.

Among the schools and education charities to secure an award in 2020 were Brockwell Nursery and Infant School Parents’ Association, Kingsbury School Charitable Fund, Read Easy UK and The Latymer Foundation at Edmonton.

The nomination process is open until 13 June. Winners will be drawn at random and the more times a charity is nominated the more chance it has of being selected.

It’s quick and easy to nominate, you can vote for your favourite charity online at: www.movementforgood.com

Mark Hews, Group Chief Executive of Ecclesiastical Insurance Group, says: “We’re delighted to announce the launch of Ecclesiastical’s Movement for Good awards for the third year running. Our Movement for Good awards will continue to help charities at a time when they need it most and we know that for many charities, £1,000 can make a real difference.

“We were thrilled to receive so many nominations from the public last year and this year we are encouraging even more people to nominate a good cause. Ecclesiastical, the fourth largest corporate donor in the UK, is a unique financial services group. We are owned by a charity, which means all available profits can be given to the good causes that are so important to our customers. As a company whose purpose is to contribute to the greater good of society, charitable giving is at the heart of our business.”