Learners from The Greenside School, Stevenage, which is a special school for pupils aged two to 19 with complex and severe learning difficulties are taking part in the Dragons’ Apprentice business challenge and raising awareness and funds for us in the process.
They have been given £100 as part of the challenge that is being run in partnership with North Herts Centre for Voluntary Service (CVS). The aim of the challenge is to help the learners develop business skills and make as much profit as possible for our work with unpaid carers as we have been chosen as the charity they are working with.
Five pupils along with a teacher and teaching assistant joined Linda Cudmore, our Fundraising and Development Manager, on a fundraising stall in Hitchin Market Square as part of the challenge on Tuesday 31st January. They sold various items they had made such as handmade cards, hot chocolate, mosaic tiles and Valentine’s Day gift boxes.
The learners have also run tuck shops, a pop-up café, and are selling their cards in a couple of shops as part of the challenge.
Jacquie Hime, Executive Director for North Herts CVS said: “This is the first time North Herts CVS have piloted the Dragons’ Apprentice Challenge in a special education setting, and it is wonderful to see the enthusiasm of the school, charity and the businesses involved as they work together to raise funds for Carers in Hertfordshire. The learners have worked really hard, and it is great to see their accomplishments being acknowledged.”
The money raised from the stall is yet to be counted as the challenge is ongoing.
The learners are being mentored by Mark Malone from TUS Accountancy Services Limited, in Hitchin. Mark said: “We are excited to be helping The Greenside School this year as it would be possible for the learners to be overlooked by other challenges of this type. We are aware that many of the learners will have unpaid carers at home which is why the work of the partner charity is so valuable. By aiding these unsung heroes, Carers in Hertfordshire are making sure that the learners have a stable and supportive home life to match the excellent work carried out by the Greenside School.”
Linda Cudmore said: “It is very exciting to be working with the young people from Greenside School. They have so many skills and have been very creative in making their cards and gifts for the challenge. We are also very pleased to be working with the school in identifying parent carers and young carers within the students’ families. We wish to ensure they have access to all of our free support.”
Our support to carers includes a Learning Disability Carers’ Forum, which meets six times a year. The forum gives carers of someone with a learning disability or autism the chance to meet up and share their experiences and views about the health and care services in Hertfordshire with those who plan or provide them, to help improve the support that is available in the county. Sometimes there are speakers talking about topics relevant to their caring role.
We also have a Parent Carer Worker and organise activities such as first aid and mindfulness courses for parents of young people up to 19 who have a Special Education Need or Disability (SEND).
If you are a carer and want to find out more about how we can support you please call 01992 58 69 69 or email