Enterprising pupils raise £4,400 for FastAid in charity fundraising challenge

Enterprising Form 5 pupils attending Eversfield Preparatory School, Solihull, got creative recently, taking on the school's annual Fantastic Fiver Charity Challenge and raising over £4,400 for the school’s beneficiary charity, FastAid, the life-saving emergency community responder scheme.

A strong bond has developed between the pupils and the charity which recruits and equips Community First Responders (CFRs) throughout Solihull and Birmingham. The CFRs are all volunteers, trained to nationally recognised standards and despatched to 999 emergency calls by the West Midlands Ambulance Service along with an ambulance as soon as one is available. Being local they can be on the scene quickly to start lifesaving treatment, begin clinical care and provide reassurance before the ambulance arrives. Annually their volunteer CFRs attend over 2,000 999 calls and are first on scene in 90% of incidents.

Each of the 39 pupils, aged just 9 or 10 years old, was given a £5 note and over the course of the six-week challenge used their own business enterprise and creativity to raise as much money as they could. The initiative not only raised essential funds for FastAid but also provided valuable learning opportunities in project management, marketing skills and, crucially, developed the children's sense of social responsibility and the value of community engagement.

A wide range of activities took place which included raising funds through gardening, organising raffles, new-to-you book and golf ball sales, babysitting, waitressing and car washing including farm vehicles and an ambulance! There was cake and bread baking, fudge, popcorn and jewellery making, and some pupils attracted crowds organising events including a concert, online quiz, a magic show, face painting and pamper day. One enterprising pupil sought permission from Solihull Council to run a loom band bracelet sale in the park, another crafted hair scrunchies using recycled material, and several took on a sponsored challenge opting to jump on their bikes, dive into pools and don their running shoes, one pupil even took on a Readathon committing to read 100 pages for 10 days. 

Terry Flower, Community Responder, FastAid, congratulated the children on their fundraising saying, “I would like to extend a huge thank you and a big well done from everyone at FastAid to all the Eversfield pupils involved in the Fantastic Fiver Challenge. An incredible amount was raised! We have and continue to be blown away by the efforts of all the staff and children involved at Eversfield, their creativity, willingness to support, and enthusiasm for a challenge! Not only is the funding important to our work across the area, but that so many have worked so hard for us is truly inspirational.”

Mr Robert Yates, Headmaster at Eversfield, indicated how proud he was of the children, “Compassion is at the heart of our school code and now, more than ever, we live in a world that requires us to take a caring approach in our interactions within society. I am incredibly proud of how all the children rose to the challenge and developed ingenious ways to contribute and support those in our local community.”