Make a Difference Day (MADD) is an annual event in which 1,100 pupils from all Houses and year groups, accompanied by their teachers, travel across the county to help at a diverse range of local community projects. This includes clearing scrub on the South Downs, packing bags for charity, baking cakes for Cancer Research UK and giving St Peter's Church a new coat of paint.
You can read some of our highlights below, along with seeing some pictures of our pupils in action.
The boys of Abraham spent MADD braving the rain in Saltdean, helping the local community to improve their environment, which now relies on volunteers for upkeep and maintenance. The boys worked tirelessly around the town, clearing green spaces, pathways and car parks and also laying huge amounts of wood chip around the Lido.
Aldrich and Williams
Accompanied by a group of hardy teachers, our pupils made a muddy hike to Saddlescombe Farm for a rewarding day of work clearing overgrown forest to make new grazing ground for local wildlife.
Pupils from Alexander House set off to Lewes. The Lower Sixth helped clean and redecorate the grounds of Lewes Football Club while the Upper Sixth split into two groups. One group undertook grounds-keeping at Lewes Castle, and the other visited a nature reserve where they cleared litter and brambles. They also helped set up a small hut for bird signalling.
The Chichester House girls put in a herculean effort this year in a variety of placements, including:
- Performing for the residents of Birchwood House, a care home in Tunbridge Wells.
- Sorting through many thousands of donated clothes, toys and household items on behalf of Martlets.
- Clearing overgrown ivy from the lagoon banks and painting the information booth at Widewater Lagoon in Lancing.
- Sorting and boxing thousands of donated books for the EduSpots library programme that takes place all across Ghana.
- Litter picking at Victoria Park in Haywards Heath.
Durnford were assigned to Pilgrim House Care Home in Brighton, where they cleared and weeded the communal garden area. Another group of boys travelled to Hove Lagoon, tasked with cleaning and painting the boat huts.
Fenwick visited St Anne's Day Centre in Kemptown, a fantastic community space that provides companionship for local elderly people. Our pupils played a variety of musical pieces and socialised with the guests.
This year Hampden's boys had a variety of placements, including:
- Carden Primary School, where the boys organised the library, weeded the garden, created a display of the children’s work and helped the pupils with their reading.
- St Nicholas CE Primary School, where they interviewed 50 children to make a promotional video.
- Elm Grove Primary School, where they planted trees, weeded the playground and varnished fences.
- Rottingdean Cricket Club, where they were tasked with clearing and organising a storage unit.
- St John the Baptist Catholic Primary School, where they tackled a list of jobs ranging from digging holes for new trees to tackling some very unruly bramble bushes, as well as tidying and maintaining the school’s pond and gardens.
Leconfield’s Fourth Form and Lower Fifth pupils travelled to Broadstone Warren to help with some forestry work. The Upper Fifth pupils assisted with a special DT afternoon at Aldrington Primary School and the Lower Sixth gave St Peter's Church a fresh coat of paint.
New and Head's
- New and Head’s journeyed to Raystede Centre for Animal Welfare to refurbish several tortoise sheds, a task which included mixing the correct ratios of peat and topsoil to make the perfect hibernation beds.
- All 66 boys from Ryle House spent the day working at One Church Brighton’s Rock Farm, near Steyning. The boys spent the day chopping wood, clearing scrub for further cultivation and levelling the ground for a new campsite area.
- School House stayed local for Make a Difference Day, helping out on Craven Vale Estate. As well as litter picking, pupils got stuck into clearing an overgrown bramble patch, weeding the washing area, clearing the undergrowth from around trees and cleaning a local bike track.
- A group of Seldon girls lent a hand at the Oasis Project in Brighton, a service that supports women and families who have been affected by substance misuse, helping them to regain back control of their lives. As well as tidying and cleaning the two centre locations, the pupils had the chance to talk to some of the service users about how the Oasis Project had changed their lives.
- The Williams Upper Fifth girls spent the day at Outlook House, an assisted living facility in Brighton for young men and women with disabilities, and helped the residents to make props for their Christmas show.
The Lower School outdid themselves. They:
- Filled shoeboxes for the Link to Hope shoebox appeal.
- Recorded a charity single at Brighton's Under the Bridge Studios.
- Raised awareness in Hove for Fun in Action, a charity that supports disadvantaged children.
- Headed down to Brighton seafront for a beach clean - followed by well-deserved ice cream.
- Packed bags in the local Waitrose in return for a donation to The Starr Trust, a family-run charity based supporting young people to fulfill their potential in sports, arts and education.
Well done to all of our pupils who represented the College so well on the day!