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Posted on July 17th 2018
HAB Girls Win 'City Pitch' Prize from Mayor
HAB girls have won £1,500 from the London Mayor to help create a garden and performance space at our school, with work due to start over the summer.
HAB was one of just six schools who made it to the final of City Pitch, a project run by the Mayor’s Fund for London.
City Pitch aims to help young Londoners create social action projects while developing their leadership, project management and communication skills. To win the prize students had to pitch their idea for an original social action project to a panel of ‘dragons’ at City Hall.
Our team's idea, Flower the Youth, was inspired by the thought that many children in London live in tower blocks and flats without any outdoor space. Girls came up with the idea of creating a multi-use green space at HAB where students can participate in creative activities, performances and gardening sessions.
In order to reach the final of City Pitch, our girls took part in a leadership day which included workshops on leadership skills, community issues and pitch planning. They then had to make a short video (see below) about their project with the best six ideas making it to the final.
City Hall 'dragons'
Student Support Manager Liz Magee admits she was nervous during the City Hall presentation. “The girls were fantastic though and did really well,” she said. “All I had to do was press the button to move the slides on their PowerPoint!”
The girls devised and created the idea and presentation all by themselves. “The project really helped them develop their leadership and presentation skills,” says Liz. “They thought up and planned the whole project with lots of emails flying around between them!”
The 11 girls in our team were from years 7, 8 and 9 which meant they also had to work with people they didn’t know and agree roles and share out responsibilities too.
“It has been a pleasure to work with the wonderful students at Harris Academy Bermondsey," says Hope McAdam of the Mayor's Fund for London. "The passion, dedication and leadership they have shown whilst preparing for the City Pitch event has been commendable. We’re looking forward to working with the girls further as they start delivering their project!”
Work to start over the summer
Now that our girls have won the prize, over the summer we’ll be preparing the area and buying tools, using the funds from City Pitch. From September the girls plan to start a gardening club and plant bulbs, with the idea of having the space ready for events from around Easter 2019.
Congratulations to the other five schools which made it to the final too. It was fantastic to hear their amazing ideas for social action projects as well. We look forward to welcoming them and everyone to our new Flower the Youth Garden once it's ready!
Qamar is interviewed about our Flower the Youth project.
The judging panel for the CityPitch Final: Olga Luzhkova, Be Open; Trudy Killcullen, Jack Petchey Foundation; Jamie McCloskey, Love Corn; and Bilal Khan, WE.