The pupils’ extensive involvement in raising funds for charities helps them to understand and respond to the needs of those less fortunate than themselves. For example, they have raised money for a school in Uganda, with which they have developed close links.
Service is a huge part of Pangbourne life and its importance shines through the ethos and teaching provided by the school.
The idea of Service is embodied in the College Flag Values, the seven qualities promoted by the school, of Kindness, Selflessness, Moral Courage, Integrity, Industry, Initiative and Resilience. The importance of serving others and putting other people first is most explicitly reiterated in Headmaster’s Assemblies on Monday mornings and the weekly Divisional Musters (House assemblies). Within the Divisions (Houses), Service is communicated subtly by reminding students to not leave their mess for other people to pick up, to treat the Divisional facilities with respect and to learn to deal with living with people in close proximity.
Pangbournians are encouraged to become involved in every facet of College life and when representing Pangbourne outside of the classroom, whether through competing in sports teams or taking part in musical ensembles, the commitment shown by students to showcase the College at its very best displays their Service to the school.
An example of students taking their responsibility to serve others seriously is their help at the annual Falkland Islands Memorial Service. Pupils volunteer their free time to provide a warm welcome and offer canapes to the families who come to the College to remember loved ones.
Pangbourne College is a registered charity (Registered Charity No. 309096) whose aims are: the advancement of education, including the provision of boarding and/or day schooling for children, and the provision of subsidised education via bursaries for deserving students whose parents could not otherwise afford the cost of educational fees.
The charitable company also has to maintain its heritage endowment, the College, with its Grade 2 listed buildings and The Falkland Islands Memorial Chapel – a national memorial site.
Key to Pangbourne’s commitment to Service is its charitable partnership with the Nabugabo Community Learning Centre (NCLC) in Uganda.
NCLC was opened in 2013 by the HUGE Partnership to provide education for local children, aged between three and nine years old, who have not previously had access to schooling as there is no government school in the area and private schooling is too expensive.
NCLC is Pangbourne’s partnership school and the link-up encompasses the College raising funds for the NCLC through charitable initiatives, visits to Uganda to enhance the education of the school, teaching staff from both schools sharing their advice and experience, and opportunities for students to visit and participate in Service while engaging in a life-changing experience.
Pangbourne aims to raise awareness of NCLC among its pupils, parents and staff, raise funds for the school, organise visits to NCLC for the sharing of good teaching practices between staff and aid NCLC in its stated aim of becoming a self-sufficient and sustainable school.
In February 2016 at the College, a Charity Night Dinner attended by Sir Ranulph Fiennes raised more than £19,000 for NCLC. In July 2016 32 Sixth Form students and five staff members will visit Uganda and spend three weeks at NCLC, helping teach English, build homes and run community events.
Staff and pupils are also encouraged to participate in their own charitable endeavours. Students save money to go on World Challenge trips to overseas lands, where half of their time is spent improving impoverished communities by painting classrooms or building facilities.
An example of the students’ commitment to Service is when a Sixth Former organised a charity head shave with eight other pupils, raising nearly £2,500 for Cancer Research UK, after his friend was diagnosed with bone marrow cancer. In doing so, the student demonstrated great leadership skills and extolled Pangbourne Flag Values, such as initiative and integrity.