SHLA Animal Care Outreach

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Here at Sir Herbert Leon Academy in Milton Keynes, we believe that all of our pupils are capable of living remarkable lives.

Our commitment to providing our academy community with opportunity, challenge and a wider understanding of the world is exemplified in our Animal Care provision.

At our academy, we not only offer Animal Care as a qualification but we also try and involve as many of our children as possible in helping to care for animals because it is simply good for them!

To make this an opportunity for all and also to fulfil our ambitions to extend the scheme, we are launching a crowdfunding appeal to raise funds to expand this provision.

It is an exciting project for the school and we hope to involve the entire school community and other supporters in the wider community in our fundraising. The wider community already benefit from our provision as we run a range of outreach programmes and opportunities which we want to grow.

By learning how to care for our animals, pupils gain life skills and a crucial understanding of the importance of health and wellbeing. They learn how to feed, clean and nurture. They develop independence, resilience and responsibility. In return, they get the opportunity to experience the positivity that looking after animals offers.

Whenever possible, we rescue animals and provide a good home for animals that may have experienced neglect. For example, Ethel and Vera, our two chickens, were re-homed from a battery hen facility. When they first joined us, the chickens were edgy and fearful. Now, with the stability and care that our pupils provide, the hens are friendly, happy and thoroughly entertaining. This kind of experience of seeing how stability and care has a positive impact, will help our pupils develop a strong character and to see the benefits of being big-hearted.

In addition to holistic positivity, our Animal Care provision also enables pupils to gain a qualification at Level 2 (GCSE equivalent) or Level 3 (A Level equivalent). For many young people, this curriculum offer is the start of a career working with animals and a lifelong specialist passion.

Our outreach work currently includes termly Open Days which enable visitors to meet the animals and learn about how our pupils work with them. The pure joy of feeding the rabbits and guinea pigs, handling the bearded dragon and snakes and walking with the goats can be experienced by all of our guests.

Our fundraising activities help us to offer these opportunities and extend the provision for our pupils and increase our outreach work. We are keen to offer dedicated visits for adults and children alike but this will require additional funding.

  • Additional weekend staffing to enable outreach work for academy pupils and external visitors - £50-£100 per session
  • Additional enclosures for display and access work during outreach activities - £30-£500 per enclosure
  • Additional security coverage to enable public access during outreach events - £50 per session
  • Additional fencing and enrichment equipment for use during outreach activities - £500 
  • Marketing and advertising material to promote outreach activities - £500
  • Marketing merchandise to promote outreach work - £500
  • Securing of externally-sourced species to provide wider opportunities for pupils and visitors - £500
  • Additional staffing for primary school access - £50 per session
  • Administrative support for outreach sessions including contacting of local clubs and support networks to broaden scope and increase scale of outreach work - £500

So why crowdfunding? The reality of school funding today means it is impossible to find the funds for more outreach work from our day-to-day budget.

Crowdfunding is a great way to hit a fundraising target through a group of people all coming together to put funds in to the same pot and encouraging others to do the same. We can also claim Gift Aid on your donation, boosting each one by 25%.

The larger the group or ‘crowd’ formed, the more money we raise so the key to any crowdfunding appeal is getting the message out there via all of our networks.

Please help us to make this possible by donating as much as you can and please pass on the appeal details on your own social media network to family, friends and your other contacts to help spread our message. Every single donation helps.

To make a donation, please click on the DONATE button here. You will have a choice of making a one-off donation or a regular monthly gift to the school.

If each parent made a regular donation of £10 a month for example, 100 parents could raise £1000 a month plus gift aid – a total of £15,000 a year.

Thank you for your support! It will really make a difference!


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