School students and staff help charities and foodbank at Christmas

Andrew Page, head chef at King's Ely, with Tabitha and Sallyann who both volunteer with the Ely Community Meals project.

Andrew Page, head chef at King's Ely, with Tabitha (left) and Sallyann (right) who both volunteer with the Ely Community Meals project. - Credit: KING'S ELY

Pupils, families and staff members at King’s Ely raised thousands of pounds for charity and donated towards a community lunch scheme and the local foodbank over the Christmas period.  

One project the school was pleased to support again this year was the Ely Community Meals Christmas Lunch.  

King's Ely Junior Christmas collection for Ely Foodbank

King's Ely Junior Christmas collection for Ely Foodbank - Credit: KING'S ELY

King’s Ely chef Chris Woodfin and other members of the catering team made and delivered more than 200 servings of soup to volunteers who run the community lunch, ready for them to be served on Christmas Day.  

Ely Cathedral and a group of volunteers have been providing a Christmas Day lunch for 12 years now. 

Girls in Withburga House with some of the Christmas gift bags they donated to Ely Foodbank

Girls in Withburga House with some of the Christmas gift bags they donated to Ely Foodbank - Credit: KING'S ELY

And, although this year's lunch was served in a slightly different format due to Covid-19, the team were determined to still bring festive food and cheer to those in need. 

With support from their King’s Ely Senior housemistress, Sue-Ellen Godde, the girls in Withburga House decided they wanted to pack as many Christmas bags as they could for Ely Foodbank to then distribute during the festive season. 

King's Ely Junior Christmas collection for Ely Foodbank

King's Ely Junior Christmas collection for Ely Foodbank - Credit: KING'S ELY

The girls donated 35 gift bags, which volunteers at the foodbank described as “wonderful”. 

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Students, staff and families at King’s Ely Junior also supported the foodbank by collecting food and drink items during the last few weeks of term.  

King's Ely Junior charity Santa run

King's Ely Junior charity Santa run - Credit: KING'S ELY

Boxes filled with everything from Christmas cakes to chutneys to tinned ham were donated in time for its volunteers to share out among those in need.  

All pupils at King’s Ely Junior (Years 3-8) also donned their whackiest Christmas costumes and accessories for Santa runs around the school’s astro-turf during the final week of term. 

King's Ely Junior charity Santa run

King's Ely Junior charity Santa run - Credit: KING'S ELY

The run raised more than £5,000 for King’s Ely Junior’s chosen charity, Shooting Star Children's Hospices, which cares for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions, and their families. 

Students in Years 12 and 13 also raised money for charity by buying tickets for a sixth form Christmas charity dinner in the Monastic Barn.  

The formal dinner, which was prepared by the school’s catering team, raised more than £1,800 for Asthma UK. 

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