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Thursday, April 2, 2020

SERVICE PUPIL'S CHAMPION - A Message from Nikki Young

May You Live in Interesting Times...

Posted 2/4/2020
They say ‘May you live in interesting times’ and we certainly are!  This April blog comes from the safety of my dining table.  Actually, to be totally honest, most of the blogs I write come from my dining table so no difference there!
Jess and I are still here, working away and trying to support our Service children the best we can.  Where possible we have contacted the children we normally support in school and spoken to them and their parents.  This will continue for as long as the schools are closed – and as long as they want to chat to us! 
We are aware that some assignments (postings) have been frozen until the summer.  This may mean that you have families who thought they were leaving North Yorkshire in the next couple of weeks but are now here for the foreseeable future which may be quite unsettling - to say the least!  Don’t forget we’re here if you feel there are families who could do with extra support in these unsettling times.


I hope you noticed we have refreshed the SPC website!  We are very proud of the first Dandelion Blog which was published last month and we’re planning to publish the next edition after Easter – if you know of any Service children who would like to be featured then please let us know!  It would be really interesting to find out what children think of the current situation – if you have key workers children at school who would be willing to answer some questions for us please let me know – Nickie.Young@NorthYorks.gov.uk
It looks as though we will not be able to celebrate VE Day 75 in the way we hoped however, Jess has produced a gorgeous VE Day 75 resource pack which she had intended to email to schools – if you would still like a copy please let Jess know: Jessica.Greenhalgh@northyorks.gov.uk.  Thinking about VE Day 75 reminded me of VE Day 70 which I celebrated on Le Cateau Primary School field!  It was the first event I organised as Service Pupils’ Champion and the pre-cursor to our Armed Forces Day for Children event.  I can vividly remember standing on the school field with Le Cateau’s fantastic Caretaker Mr Mel Shepherd and hearing tracked vehicles rumble down the road – until that point we hadn’t been entirely sure that there would be anything for the children to look at!  On that day Le Cateau’s Class 5H surprised everyone by dancing to the REME Band playing ‘Uptown Funk’.  5H had been working on the surprise for weeks and they were amazing – the footage is still available to prove it, have a look at “5H Wow the Crowd at the HMS Heroes Catterick Garrison VE Day Celebrations” on YouTube.  It’s so odd to think that those children are in Year 10 now!
Jess has also been in touch with RBL Lister House, the residents there are in lockdown and therefore are unable to leave the nursing home or have family & friends visit them.  The would love to hear from Service Children to raise their spirits and have asked that letters be sent, with a stamped self-addressed envelope to ‘Residents of Lister House, c/o Rachel Gilby, Lister House, Southgate, Ripon, HG4 1PG’.  If you would like any further information please email Jess – Jessica.Greenhalgh@northyorks.gov.uk.
I hope you are all well, we’re looking forward to seeing you all again!
Nickie