Kindness Week

GA Student Leadership Kindness Week 00

After an exciting training day in March on ‘How Kindness Can Change the World’, the Student Leadership Team decided to create a project that would spread kindness throughout the Gateway Academy and within the local community.

They planned an entire week of surprises, nominated and written in by students within the Academy. All year groups completed nominations, resulting in an array of students, teachers and parents being presented with gifts throughout the week; all of which were total surprises and random acts of kindness.

Parents were invited into the school and presented with items such as flowers and vouchers suggested by their own child. Members of staff ranging from support, coaching and middle leaders were shocked to receive heartfelt words written by students as well as presenting them with gifts. In addition, students in colleges were given rewards and surprised as well. All in all, the Student Leadership Team started this summer term off spreading joy, happiness and a positive buzz!

The students decided that it was then time to take their project further into the community. They all piled onto a decorated bus and their first stop of the day was Tilbury Town where they approached people who were making a difference in the community. Students shared words of thanks and gave a balloon to local bus drivers, staff clearing up litter in the community, men working at Tilbury Station and even approached a lovely young lady cleaning the windows of a shop! The smiles of joy of their faces brought excitement for the students; a life lesson about the importance of giving and how kindness really can make a difference to someone’s day.

Students then visited Basildon Hospital where they bought cuddly toys and individually wrapped toiletry packs to the parents in the childrens’ ward. Cupcakes were presented to the hardworking NHS staff. Katie G, a Year 9 student, spoke publicly to the staff stating, “You all really do make such a difference to my life as well as so many others in our community. Thank you on behalf of all of us.”

Many young people from the Gateway Academy’s Student Leadership Team dressed as super heroes as they wandered around with NHS staff leaders, with the aim to brighten their day. Joanne, a Year 8 student was tearful when sharing her experience, “I gave the giant green dinosaur teddy to a young boy who was about to go into surgery today. He told me that this cuddly toy is now his best friend and will help him through today.”

Ms Siobhan O’Dwyer, a member of the Academy’s admin staff who supported on the day, said “It was a delight and honour to be in attendance on our school trip today. It really was a trip with a difference. The students were enthusiastic, impeccably behaved and without doubt, brought a smile and feel good factor to what would have been just another Thursday in many people’s everyday lives. Having had a glimpse of the children’s wards at Basildon Hospital, I felt that some of the Gateway Academy students were somewhat humbled and taken aback at the obvious medical need of children their own age. A great venture all round for both the givers and receivers.”

Miss Megan Koprash, Student Leadership Coordinator, said “I am so honoured to work with such an inspiring group of young leaders. There are such wonderful giving people in Tilbury and Chadwell and it was such an exciting day taking time to give to others. I am genuinely proud to be part of this school and community.”

See more pictures from the day here.