School Community Helps Others At Harvest
Whole School Charity

The Bolton School community came together to help others at Harvest time. Families across several areas of the school generously donated food and produce to Harvest Collections, which were in turn given to local charity Urban Outreach.

In the Junior Girls’ School, parents and grandparents joined pupils in the hall for a special afternoon assembly to celebrate Harvest. The Year 6 Ambassadors spoke about the importance of giving. The girls were joined for the occasion by Mr Dave Bagley from Urban Outreach, who said: ‘When you give, you don’t just give, you change the world!’ He went on to talk about how looking after just one other person can change the world, and told the story of ‘John’ using the girls’ suggestions and decisions to change the narrative of his story. This illustrated his point that people’s stories are being written right now in Bolton, and everyone has the opportunity to affect them through their actions, potentially changing the ending to those stories. The girls sang several songs as part of their Harvest celebration before Year 6 helped Mr Bagley with the significant job of loading up his van.

The Junior Boys’ School also invited family members to attend their Harvest Celebration. Mr King welcomed everyone to the hall with the reminder that, as well as becoming educated and enjoying extra-curricular activities, it’s important to learn how to be good people as well. Mr Boswell joined the assembly on behalf of Urban Outreach and thanked the boys for their contribution. He said that, everywhere in the world, there are always people who cannot afford to put food on the table, and spoke about some of the work Urban Outreach does in Bolton. He equated Jesus feeding the 5,000 to the work of Urban Outreach: both asked the same question, ‘How to we feed the people?’ The charity collects food at Harvest time from 60 schools and 60 churches and shares it out over the course of the year – miracles are still happening! Urban Outreach feeds people first, but also tried to deal with other issues such as homelessness, helping people with lifestyle choices and difficult family situations.

Two siblings, Isabella in Year 5 at Hesketh House and Tom in Year 3 at Park Road, received lots of extra harvest donations after writing to their dad’s company, Walkers, to ask for help!

Mr Bagley also attended the Beech House Harvest Assembly to collect donations from Bolton School’s Infants and their families. A group of children led the whole school assembly and pupils heard from Mr Bagley himself. He told them about how Urban Outreach helps people in Bolton and said, ‘In a world where you can be anything – be kind!’

The Girls’ Division held a harvest Collection and Assembly, with girls processing into the hall to leave their contributions on the stage. As the hall filled, the display of donations grew larger and larger. A group of pupils led the assembly, speaking about the history of Harvest both in the UK and elsewhere. They revealed the important work that Urban Outreach does each year through Winter Watch, which provides a three-course meal for 60-90 people on weekend evenings, with showers, clothing and advice also available. Grub Tubs, which are in use throughout the year at Bolton School, allow Urban Outreach to support more than 300 people with food parcels.

The assembly went on to talk about how, in the modern world, Harvest can become an analogy: a time of year to consider how the work we do might produce results one day in the future. One example shared was Greta Thunberg, who has planted seeds in people’s minds about stopping climate change and protecting the environment, and has seen the fruits of this work. The girls were reminded of the importance of noticing and celebrating results with gratitude, in order to reap what has been sown and see that what we do matters. The assembly ended with singing the traditional Harvest hymn, ‘We Plough the Fields and Scatter’.

In the Boys’ Division, a slightly different kind of Harvest collection was held and as a result pupils were able to donate £366 to Urban Outreach.

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