As part of the annual Prize Giving celebrations the Head Girl and Deputies give their reviews of the last academic year.
Rosie Mann, Deputy Head Girl
It is well known that the girls of Saint Martin’s are great philanthropists and raise vast sums of money each year to help the less fortunate. Over the last academic year the school’s charity was the Teenage Cancer Trust, a charity set up to help young people between the ages of 13 and 24 through an indescribable and unimaginably hard time. The Teenage Cancer Trust provides specialist services specifically designed for teenagers. This consists of providing an invaluable care package, to ensure the support of a young person’s family and friends throughout the course of their cancer treatment.
Our girls were inspired by an overwhelming desire to help people of similar age to themselves and to give back to them in any small way, the semblance of a typical teenage life. After a year of continuous fund raising, it was revealed that an incredible £4000 was raised. The money collected will be spent on ensuring the future of the services provided by the charity as well as contributing to research, treatment and educational facilities.
No year of fundraising at Saint Martin’s would be complete, without the dedication of Mr Allen to his musical charity nights. This year’s charity night was ‘Songs from the Shows’ and saw exceptional talent from both pupils and teachers. The whole evening raised an exceptional £888 with the help of the Young Enterprise groups selling fruit punch and other refreshments. The pantomime, ‘Cinderella and the Seven Dwarfs,’ was another great charitable success with more than £400 being raised.
However, over the course of the past year girls throughout all areas of the school have supported more charities than just the Teenage Cancer Trust. The Big Knit allowed both staff and girls to knit hundreds of tiny hats to be sold on top of ‘Innocent’ smoothie bottles, where for every one bottle twenty-five pence would be donated to Age UK. The Parents’ Association helped to organise a collection of all our old school uniforms where they were gratefully received by girls in our partnership school in Ghana. This provided them with a much needed uniform to attend school in. November saw Sixth Formers and staff sleep in cardboard boxes in the car park of the St Basils Centre in Birmingham to raise money for young homeless people. Donations were also sent to Water Aid and the Malala Foundation. Well done to all girls on another outstanding year of generous charitable giving.
Alongside charitable initiatives, Sport is another of Saint Martin’s great achievements. Perhaps the most anticipated swimming event of the academic year is the Solihull Borough Championships. Having won the overall trophy for the last six consecutive years it came as no surprise to the girls that we claimed it for the seventh time. Two teams entered the prestigious Warwick 100 Swimming Gala and swam extremely well to achieve excellent results. The Under 16 team won both the Individual Medley and the Freestyle relays to become overall Under 16 Champions.
Whilst at Saint Martin’s, I have helped coach the Junior School Swimming Team, from Year 7 through to the Sixth Form. I believe this to be a prime example of the spirit of sport here at Saint Martin’s; that a girl is encouraged to get involved in sport regardless of her ability. From volunteering and helping other people, an individual can get to know other girls in the school, strengthening the close-knit community Saint Martin’s has. I think this greatly demonstrates the inclusivity of Saint Martin’s and the strong relationship a Saint Martin’s girl has with her peers and the staff, in that she feels confident and comfortable to compete for a team or to take on a role of responsibility.
However, swimming is not the only success at Saint Martin’s. The Autumn term saw the current Year 11 win the Solihull Borough Netball League as they were victors in twelve of their thirteen matches. They also won the Borough Hockey League to become West Midlands Champions. The Lower Sixth also played excellently and finished runners up of their League. In Cross-Country, Saint Martin’s received the trophy for Overall Cross Country Borough Champions at Solihull Sports Awards evening.
Congratulations to all girls who competed in any sporting event last year. Your efforts are greatly appreciated by the PE staff and Saint Martin’s as a whole, here’s to another great year!