Apprentice raises funds for Barnsley primary school’s after-school activities

A Barnsley College apprentice has funded her own after-school sports activities for 100 pupils at Oakhill Primary Academy.

Evie Edwards, a level 3 teaching assistant apprentice, demonstrated her initiative and dedication to support the children at the school and proposed a new inclusive daily after-school club.

Evie joined the school in September 2022 and quickly developed strong professional relationships with the pupils she was asked to support and successfully delivered support sessions, such as Lego Therapy, Thrive and Jump Ahead.

Alongside providing the support sessions, Evie used her cheerleading training and connections to plan, fund and coordinate the daily after-school activities after discussing the possibilities with the school’s senior leadership team.

Evie was motivated by the importance of physical activity on a child’s development, health and well-being. To ensure that all children had an equal opportunity to attend and that finances were not a barrier, Evie organised events, including a sponsored walk with her cheerleading group to raise funds.

All five of the school’s extracurricular activities are fully funded by Evie and are at full capacity with twenty children attending each club.

Evie said: “I wanted to set up the after-school club as I thoroughly enjoyed doing sport as a child and the opportunities it gave me, like competing against other schools, so I wanted to give that opportunity to the children at my school.

“Fundraising was quite difficult; the school always supported me and was incredibly helpful in spreading word of my fundraising activities – it was thrilling to see how generous everyone was.

“I lead the after-school sessions and I love seeing the happiness and joy it brings to the children – it’s a relief to see my hard work has paid off.”

Georgina Stevenson, deputy head teacher at Oakhill Primary Academy, added: “Evie has shown initiative and dedication, asking to set up her own after-school club, for which she sourced her own funding; this is above and beyond the expectations of any apprentice.

“As a school, we feel that Evie is an amazing asset, she approaches every situation with professionalism and maturity beyond her years and the children have a wonderful relationship with Evie, which allows them to feel safe in school and able to tackle their days.”

Image: Barnsley College
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