Vic Rivett, Head Teacher, St Clare’s Catholic Primary School, Birmingham

“I asked one of my Year 3 boys to describe City Year and he said, ’I’m speechless!’. I asked him to try for me, to try to find just one word. He thought for a minute, his little body vibrating with excitement, until he finally yelled out ’FANTASTIC!’.

“I use City Year as my eyes and ears – in the halls, on the playground, in the classroom. Which children do they notice? Why? Who are the hidden children, the ones that our teachers miss? And they always find them, they always know. This is why City Year is amazing.

“Initially I looked into getting individual volunteers from the community to help out. But THE worst thing you can say to a six year-old is, ’We’re going to start this new programme and it’s going to be really exciting and you get to be a part of it!’, and then have to turn around and tell them, ’Actually, we can’t do it because the volunteer didn’t turn up today’. We needed someone dependable, reliable, consistent. And that was when City Year came into the picture. City Year provides good quality, consistent 1:1 support for the students. And even better, we at St Clare’s feel that by partnering with them, we are giving back to the community, in the same way that the corps members are.”