Volunteering Award for West Acton School

Charitable activities of Holy Family Primary staff and pupils recognised

Teacher Ann-Marie McDaid accepting the award from Cardinal Vincent Nichols
Teacher Ann-Marie McDaid accepting the award from Cardinal Vincent Nichols


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December 14, 2022

Holy Family Primary School in West Acton has won an award for the many charitable activities they have taken part in. ,.

The award from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Westminster, recognises the many social action projects undertaken by staff and pupils at the school. These include raising money for those affected by the war in Ukraine and for homeless people as well as a charity in South Africa. Pupils also helped the Ealing Parks team plant over 70 trees on North Acton playing fields.

When selecting award winners, the judges were particularly impressed with the support offered by pupils at the school to isolated elderly people in the area. The children make and post out over 250 personalised Christmas and Easter cards and decorations each year, each one delivered to the senior’s home address. After the Covid pandemic they began inviting the seniors to their school for social events and have so far held two tea parties during which the children entertained their guests with singing and Irish dancing and took time to talk with and listen to the guests.

One of the guests wrote in a thank you letter “we were spellbound [by the dancers]. We would like to express our gratitude to all involved in making this a very special afternoon that we will remember for a long time.”

Introducing the awards, Cardinal Vincent Nichols said, “I want to congratulate all those who are receiving awards...and thank you, thank you very much indeed. I hope and pray that this evening, ...will be an encouragement to many to say “hey I’d like to be there” I’d like to see that award coming our way, and spur them on to a greater effort.”

Accepting the award on behalf of the school community, teacher Ann-Marie McDaid said, “The children and staff at Holy Family are delighted to receive this award. Thank you to the seniors at the Irish Chaplaincy Services for nominating us. The children have gained so much from this partnership and it has been a joy to see them put their Catholic Social Teaching into action and make a difference to the lives of these seniors. It has been a privilege to work in partnership with such an incredible charity over the past few years and we look forward to seeing this intergenerational partnership grow and flourish. “

The awards ceremony was held on Thursday 17 November and hosted by Caritas Westminster, the Roman Catholic church’s social outreach charity covering Hertfordshire and most of North London. Awards were presented to a wide range of individuals, schools and volunteers from parishes and charities, recognising the huge amount of work done by the church in supporting people who are disadvantaged and marginalised by our society.

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