Every year, we welcome the Chess Club from St Monica’s Primary School in Hoxton to the SAGE London office. Our partnership with St Monica’s has been going since 2004 and for the last 8 years, SAGE volunteers have helped out with Maths and Reading mentoring every Wednesday lunchtime. Chess Club was started as a new volunteer scheme in 2007 after we raised funds to buy chess sets for the school. Every Thursday lunchtime, a group of volunteers plays chess against Year 5 students (aged 9 and 10). The highlight of the year for all the kids we volunteer with is their trip to SAGE’s offices – they love getting out of school for an afternoon and seeing where their SAGE partners work! Using the internal phones are always a big hit and there seems to be nothing more exciting to our lovely visitors than printing labels!
This year, the Chess Club kids took over the boardroom and played a game of The Apprentice, with Clarrisa giving us a very convinving impression of Sir Alan Sugar. The two teams had a few minutes to come up with ideas for a new snack for children and they impressed us with their creativity and ability to think on their feet. Sadly, I was the only one who didn’t impress Sir Alan and I was fired unceremoniously!
We’re looking forward to welcoming the other groups from St Monica’s to SAGE for a visit soon. In the meantime, I suppose I’d better start looking for a new job!