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Partnership & Engagement: The Food & Uniform Bank

Edinburgh Uniform Bank
  • Senior School

Our school community at Watson's benefits greatly from our relationships with the local community and educational institutions across the city and beyond. These partnerships help to bring our values - respect all, be kind, join in and aim high - to life. They provide opportunities to engage with life beyond the school, building social understanding and challenging preconceptions. Our charity partners represent part of this learning journey for our school community, including reinforcing the importance of charitable giving.

As part of this work, pupils from the S5 and S6 Food and Uniform Bank Group visited the Edinburgh School Uniform Bank - one of the school’s charity partners - before presenting an assembly on what food and uniform banks are, drawing attention to why they are needed. They then went on to officially launch the Senior School Food Bank campaign for 2022 which reached its deadline this week. 

The Food and Uniform Bank Group collected donations from pupils and staff that were then passed to the Edinburgh Food Project. Campaigns have also run this year to support the work of Edinburgh School Uniform Bank: a collection of items of uniform the current call out for warm clothes. As part of her Journalism enrichment, Rosie (S6) explained a bit more about the uniform bank initiative, compiling a super video which illustrates the brilliant work the group has done for the campaign since August:

“The Edinburgh School Uniform Bank is one of the school’s new charity partners for this year. As an organisation, they do exemplary work, providing underprivileged children and families with school uniforms. The organisation helps thousands of households yearly, giving young people and their loved ones the opportunity to feel more included and better equipped to go to school. Second hand or new uniforms are donated by local people, companies, schools or other organisations throughout Edinburgh, providing a wide range of different garments which are catalogued and sent out. The charity relies on donations and volunteering work in order to keep it running. This summer, the organisation gave out over 1000 packs of uniforms to families, showing just how in demand they are and how many people are looking for this kind of support. In addition, the charity is now running a winter uniform appeal in which warm clothes such as coats, jumpers and trousers are being donated to help support families as we come into the cold winter months. 

We went to the charity's office and were shown around the facilities before being split up into groups to help in various ways. We sorted uniforms into size, type, colour and organised garments into the condition they were in, hanging all clothing up on racks or into storage boxes. We also helped move and label uniforms to ensure they were placed in the correct areas. 

We followed our visit up with a pupil-led presentation in an assembly, which focussed on encouraging fellow pupils and staff to become more aware of the charity’s ethos and how they can help. Even if you do not think your donations are much, they all make a huge difference. 

With the Uniform Bank relying heavily on volunteers, the work by all pupils across the Watson’s community had an extremely positive impact and helped greatly. We are proud to be part of a school that offered ‘drop off points’ as a means to gather donations effectively. 

With the difficulties that many people are having financially in the UK right now, it is vital that organisations such as the Edinburgh School Uniform Bank are able to run and are there to support families when they most need it.”

Having passed the Partnerships Week ‘finish line’, Community and Educational Partnerships Manager, Helen Boyd further reiterated why we work effectively together:

“It's a privilege to work alongside community and school partners and I think we would all agree that we are stronger together. As partners we try to find meaningful opportunities to make an impact in some way, not least on our pupils in terms of their own appreciation of critical issues facing the world today. Pupils in the Food and Uniform Bank Group have done a great job of raising awareness of how these issues are creating ever-increasing challenges locally and galvanising the Senior School food bank collection - a small contribution to the immense work of Edinburgh Food Project.”

  • Charities
Edinburgh Uniform Bank

Edinburgh Uniform Bank visit.