The Thomas Hardye School

Students visit Wembley to celebrate WE Day


WE Day


On Wednesday 9th March a group of 14 students and two teachers attended WE Day UK 2016 at Wembley Stadium. The event is hosted by Free the Children and sponsored by Barclays Bank PLC and Virgin Atlantic. The line-up was impressive with top acts such as; Rita Ora, Fleur East, Dr Brian Cox and Labrinth all performing or talking, but more importantly, the event was to celebrate the charitable efforts of the 12,000 students in attendance as tickets are earned and not bought for this event. Each of the 14 students who were nominated for a ticket had gone above-and-beyond in their efforts to raise awareness of and money for a number of different charities, completing a range of different challenges i.e. walking 16 miles for Water Aid, cake sales, standing up for an entire day and organising concerts.

After an early set-off the THS party arrived in Wembley and it was only then that the reality of how big this event was and how lucky the students were to be invited hit them. The students (and Mrs Samways and Mrs Lewis) were amazed by the range of different speakers and performers and there really was something for everyone. A poignant moment in the show was hearing young Sohana talk about her daily struggles. Georgia Glynn in year 11 reflected as follows:

“Sohana, whose bravery and courage I was inspired and instantly taken back by. She explained the daily struggles she faced alone with her mother while doctors tried to find a cure for her condition. Born with a rare skin condition, Epidermolysis Bullosa, which is simply shortened to EB, means she is reliant on wearing protective clothing to get her from A-B without sustaining any minor bump/knock. Even the slightest, can cause excruciating bleeding and painful blisters. Her hopes for a cure soars high, and by her moving speech in mere of an arena bursting with strangers, I was instantly moved and inspired, and determined to make a change. Happiness is her medicine, her drug, her emotional cure, but not the desperate painkiller she seeks.”

Before the concert finale that was Labrinth’s performance the CEO of Virgin Atlantic and two pilots came on stage along with three students who spoke about a wonderful experience that they had had last summer; visiting a rural village in India and actively engaging in helping build a school there. Free the Children and Virgin Atlantic take 30 students to India every year to different villages that need help. It is not only a perfect opportunity for young people to literally help those who need it, but is a fantastic once in a lifetime experience for those who go and learn about and experience a different culture. 29 of the 30 available spaces are allocated via a selection process, the remaining 1 place is given out to one of the schools that attended WE Day. The pilots brought a large box onto stage and prepared to draw the winning school’s name out – there were approximately 1000 schools there and the chances were slim. A sheet of white paper was drawn and the loud speaker announced “The Thomas Hardye School in Dorchester”. We won! One of our students will be going to India in August 2016.

The concert was fantastic, inspirational and entertaining and all students in attendance left with a better understanding of why the charitable works they have been doing are so important and the difference that it can make. The atmosphere in the mini-bus was electric. Since the concert the students have been coming forward with fund-raising ideas and all are keen to hear who has been given this scholarship. The selection process begins after Easter – watch this space!

Ms Samways






March 2016