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PTA Stories: Forging links with local communities

by PTAsocial in November 15, 2014

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PTAs can be instrumental in creating a bond between the parents in school, and also reaching out into the local community to involve a broader cross-section of people in school celebrations. In times gone by, especially in village settings, schools were often the hub of the local community.

 

Friends of Hamble Primary

Hamble is a very old village in Hampshire. Most of the families in the village have been here for a long time – some of them even tracing their families back to the 1800s. They joke to each other that ‘you need a passport to get out of the village’. It’s the sort of place where you raise children ten doors down from your childhood home and call older friends ‘Auntie’.

Many of the villagers went to the village school over the years. The school used to be the centre of the community, but has not played such a central role in recent years. It is complicated by the fact that many school families have both parents working full time, so they don’t have much time to get involved and help out with school fundraising.

The Friends, however, decided to think outside the box and took a proactive approach by befriending the local pensioner groups. They told us:

‘A lot of grannies and grandpas and older people in the village come in and do things, because they have the time. They love it! They ring up and ask “When can I come in? What do you need me for?”’

Involving the senior citizens of the village has been hugely beneficial for the Friends of Hamble Primary, and it is helping them re-establish the school as the hub of their community. The older generation are delighted to get involved, meeting more people and making a difference, and of course the events they are helping to run raise much-needed funds for the school. It’s a wonderful way for the children of the village to get to know some of the local community too and benefit from their wisdom and experience.

Thanks to Friends of Hamble Primary for sharing this heart-warming story with us. We felt compelled to share it with you too!

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Chris, Beryl, & Christine from Hamble Village Market & Community Coffee Morning: the font of all knowledge in the village when it comes to fundraising, needing a Santa, how to use a truckload of carrier bags and a myriad of other information.

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Aunty Margaret (Margaret Greenfield) at the Harrier Veterinary Surgery Open Day Refreshment Stall.

 

PTAs have the power to forge strong links with local communities

People think that PTAs are just about fundraising. But they’re not. PTAs do vital work in making schools the hub of the local community. Read about other ways to make your school a community hub here.

Do you feel that you are part of a community at school? Does that school community include extended family like grandparents, or other members of the local community? We’d love to hear your PTA’s story. You can also comment on this blog or connect with us on Facebook or Twitter. Check out our Pinterest page for more PTA inspiration.

 

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