Thank you Jasmine & Anna…
Before this week I had never realised how much effort went into charity operations. Imagine yourself giving to charity; a wardrobe clear-out and not a lot more.
Now imagine yours along with thousands of other people’s donated items crammed into bulging black bin liners, taking over every room. Floor to ceiling, the items to be painstakingly sorted by age appeared endless. As soon as an area was cleared, it was quickly replaced with further donations. Although we appreciate such overwhelming support for the charity, it was hard for our small college not to feel demoralised by this mammoth task.
Cyrilyn and her team did a wonderful job of organisation that helped us along immensely and ensured that our team were united in their efforts. We were briefed every morning on our tasks for the day and we reflected on the previous day’s successes to keep us motivated.
Anna and I were logistical organisers, specialising in cardboard creations (we made the boxes) which was yet another taxing endeavour. At the time it felt tedious, but as the boxes left the 6th Form we quickly became aware of our importance and huge achievements – every task comes together in the end.
The storage units were especially challenging, as there was some confusion over box destinations and colour co-ordination. This meant we had to backtrack and re-do certain sections. This was frustrating at the time, but really goes to show how easily things can go awry in such huge operations. With great support from Ms Davies and Ms Puddy, we got through it, explaining the correct system to the next team. Communication was key, and it helped to improve teacher-student rapport as we all worked towards the same goal. Nepal – who could only take new items – and Sierra-Leone were the focus of this exploit as we salvaged the brand new items. This was motivation to keep working, as we knew that our work and orphan’s happiness was directly proportional (with a positive gradient, of course!).
Returning on the final day, with boxes packed and ready to go, the 6th Form was a barren landscape that T.S. Eliot would be proud of. We were proud of it too, as we finally felt that completion was on the horizon. Loading the van took over the day, and we all worked to a colour coding system that ensured all parcels went to their delegated location.
We have valued this experience greatly, and will never forget the skills we have acquired.
We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers who made it possible, especially Cyrilyn and Brad for their high spirits and positivity throughout the process.
See you next year!
Anna and Jasmine