Winners! Pupil’s fundraising team take top prize in charity awards

QE pupil Senthuran Jeevan’s fund-raising team have been named the overall winners in an international children’s charity’s annual awards.


Team Oak, compr ising Year 9 pupil Senthuran and three teammates from other schools, raised a total of £7,106.12 for The Wings of Hope between October 2016 and March 2017 through a series of activities ranging from car boot sales to a special concert.


Having successfully progressed through the semi-finals of The Wings of Hope Achievement Award (WOHAA) at the Houses of Parliament, the team were kept in suspense in the finals at the Royal College of Surgeons until the very end of the evening: since category prizes were announced first and category winners could not also be the overall winner, Senthuran feared they might have won nothing.


""“We were really happy and relieved when the overall prize was announced – I am proud of our achievement and glad we put in all the hard work and that we were able to learn some new skills in the process, such as how to get people together and how to manage events,” he said. “I believe life is not just about having a good time and looking after yourself; it’s important to contribute to society and help those who have less than yourself.”


WOHAA is a social enterprise programme for pupils in Years 9-13, requiring participants to work in teams of not more than six. It is designed to develop skills such as leadership and project management, while also raising money for the charity.


""The Wings of Hope’s work includes the support of children in India and in Malawi. In India, it provides a free education to children whose families could not otherwise afford to send them to school, as wel l as arranging tuition evenings in North Chennai for some children living in slums. In Malawi, its work involves not only education but also providing poor and orphaned children with the basics of life – food and clothing – and with the stationery they need to attend classes.


The four teammates’ fund-raising activities included selling food and flowers at temples, Halloween sales, cake sales and door-to-door collecting to raise money for the North London-based charity.


""During the spring, Team Oak was behind a concert at Rickmansworth’s Watersmeet Theatre, for which they spent several months raising sponsorship and selling programme advertisements. QE Headmaster Neil Enright was invited as Chief Guest at the concert in recognition of the fact that QE boys have now been involved in fundraising for The Wings of Hope for several years.


As part of their prize, Team Oak will be going to India on an expenses-paid trip to teach primary-age children at the Chennai school which The Wings of Hope supports.


Congratulating the four teammates, The Wings of Hope’s founder, Mrs Rajni Sriram, praised “this amazing team”.