Today is World Food Day. Across the globe, different events are organized to raise awareness specifically of problems in food supply and distribution.
Projects aim to help farmers be more productive and improve local communities’ access to food and agricultural income.
Our Geography Department, which has been awarded the Geographical Association Quality Mark for its excellent work, recently met representatives from Project SOIL (Sustainable Organic Integrated Livelihoods). SOIL works in Haiti to provide organic compost which is critical for agriculture and reforestation. Our students were also able to discuss with them the logistics of managing a non-governmental organisation in the developing world and the experience of working for Médecins Sans Frontières in the Sudan.
I think it is very important that our students, despite being 5thousands of miles away from the developing world, conflict zones and areas scarred by natural disasters, do not lose a sense of connectivity with the people who live and work there. Today is a non-uniform day and we are raising money for charities which work with refugees. Next Friday our leaving collection after the Founder’s Day service will be for a school in Africa. At the service, we will hear again of our shared humanity and reflect that ‘every man is part of the main’.
Our Foley lecture programme continues next week. Although the talk is billed as ‘Running a Theme Park’ (it is given by the operational director of LEGOLAND Windsor who is an Old Foleyan), it is actually a talk on logistics. The skills required to manage Legoland are, I imagine, both transferable and similar to those required to manage a sustainable development project overseas.
But I think we still need a push for a sharper and fuller understanding of global issues, which is why next half term we will have our inaugural inter-house Model United Nations competition. It will be run by our prefect team. The UN, which stands for all of the things mentioned above, has its 70th anniversary this year. Indeed ‘UN Day’ is the day after we remember the founder of this particular Blue Coat School. Blue is definitely the colour for next weekend.