'International law firm Allen & Overy (A&O) have supported our school for about ten years, and support us in a huge variety of ways, one of which is financially. They fund our breakfast club, have provided iPads for use by SEN children and paid for four year groups to attend a creative writing workshop. We received a £10,000 grant from A&O five years ago to refurbish the library, and they also funded - and helped build - a water play feature and stage for outdoor lessons.
A&O are currently making a huge difference to our school by paying for the resources and preparation needed for the school to transition to an exciting new curriculum. Most importantly, they now pay my salary - a part-time role on a three-year contract. As well as funding, A&O do so much to support the children through volunteering. Staff regularly visit the school as volunteers, supporting reading and financial literacy, and children have been mentored by A&O employees.
They also organise projects and workshops, including Mosaic Mentoring, a programme for Year 5 girls and their mothers where A&O staff became mentors for the pupils, while the Magic Me project brought pupils together with local older people to explore the history of the area through art, poetry and storytelling.
A key event sponsored by A&O is our nativity procession, which we've held for the past four years. We borrow a donkey from Spitalfields City Farm and parade through the streets around Brick Lane, singing carols as we go. We finish in Old Spitalfields Market, where the children give readings, play instruments and recite poems. A&O provide and run a sound system, and we're also accompanied by their choir.
The event ensures everyone knows about our lovely village school in the heart of the city!
A&O has made an enormous difference to the pupils. All of these curriculum-enriching activities expand horizons for the children and give them a creative and exciting time here at Christ Church.'
Emma Coleman, School Development Manager, Christ Church Primary School, Spitalfields, London (190 pupils)