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  • Writer's pictureBeth Nunn

'We Love Manchester' funding success

We were thrilled at the beginning of lockdown to secure funding from 'We Love Manchester' charity to help us support young people across Manchester.

The funding helped us to carry out the following activities:

- 150 learning packs were delivered to young people at three Manchester high schools (Chorlton High School, Manchester Communication Academy and MEA Central). These packs included a reading books, stationary, felt tips and even an Easter egg!

- The PIE Slice challenge was set for 90 students - 45 from Chorlton High and 45 from Manchester Communication Academy. The challenge involved students being set weekly tasks for eight weeks to complete at home. Each task linked to the PIE slices: communication, digital, project management, community links and cultural capital. Every week, three winning students were chosen from each school based on the work they completed and prizes posted out!

- We were then able to use these activities to post daily online tasks that were available to all online, meaning that there were free enrichment activities available online for parents and students. These were completed as far away as Australia!

- We also held weekly Zoom check in sessions for over 50 vulnerable young people. These involved weekly catch ups with PIE and school staff, as well as the chance to chat to class mates, take part in games and quizzes, and talk through any concerns that students were having.

The funding helped to directly support almost 300 young people within Manchester. As well as having the chance to engage in challenges (and win prizes!), students had the opportunity to stay connected to their wider community during the height of lockdown.

Hear some of the feedback from students, staff and parents can be found below.

"Thank you for all your support and encouragement of our daughter over the last few weeks, I think the PIE challenge has been very valuable to her during this Pandemic." Parent of Year 8 student.

"Working with PIE every week for the Zoom calls has been such a positive experience. The calls have been organised, engaging and supportive - having that to look forward to on a Monday afternoon has helped me as well as the students and helped to give some structure to my week." School staff member.

"I enjoyed the tasks because they were always varied and gave me something to do after my school work when I would usually go to after school clubs. There were lots of interesting things to do and find out about." Student, Year 9.

"I liked how the tasks often linked to staying safe and giving messages to those people who are helping or are in need of help." Student, Year 7.

"I think this programme helped me gain my confidence, and help me understand different topics. I really liked the activities around Black Lives Matter." Student, Year 8.

"I think the most valuable part of these sessions, was the chance of learning or engaging in topics that you wouldn't normally do. This has made me more aware of things and really pushed me to put my opinions on everything. There were also activities where I was able to apply day to day skills into different scenarios." Student, Year 9

Thanks so much to our partner schools for their support, and for all of the amazing efforts from students throughout the challenges! We hope you are all staying safe and having a great time settling back into school.

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