City Year UK announces Lord Blunkett as first patron at 5th birthday celebration

As part of our fifth anniversary celebrations we announced Lord Blunkett as our first honorary patron.  The former Home Secretary and Secretary of State for Education and Employment, who has a long-standing interest in youth social action, has been a supporter of City Year UK since it started in 2010.

In a special video message aired during our fifth birthday party, Lord Blunkett enthusiastically thanked the 680 young people who’ve joined City Year UK to date and highlighted that ‘giving and getting’ is what the charity’s year of service is all about.  

 5thbday_treeOur 5th birthday party was hosted by William Ellis School in Camden and was attended by nearly 250 current and former City Year UK corps members, supporters and school partners, each of which had sent birthday messages from pupils, encapsulating their special bond with our corps members.

Sophie Livingstone, Chief Executive of City Year UK, said:

“One birthday message from a pupil simply said ‘Thank you for making me come to school every day, you are the best.’ That sums up why I’m so proud of our inspirational volunteers. Every day, they ‘see’ those pupils who might go unnoticed; they celebrate their achievements and support them to succeed.

5thbday_cakeWilliam Ellis School has benefited from teams of City Year UK volunteers since 2012.  Sam White, the school’s head teacher, said:

“Congratulations to City Year UK on its first five years. William Ellis is now into its fourth year of partnership with City Year and what I can say is that over that time things have really changed at this school. We used to have one of the lowest attendances of any secondary school in Camden, now we are one of the highest. We have transformed the behaviour record and the achievement gap – the difference between how those from low income backgrounds and their better off peers perform – has shrunk from 30 per cent to nothing. City Year has had a fantastic part to play in that”.

View the photos here.

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