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Work experience for a worthier cause

School calendars turned once again at the end of last month to the Three Hierarch’s Day – a day on which most schools are closed to commemorate the three Holy Fathers of Education in the Orthodox Church. But over 90 students from the English School participated in the first ever Youth Action Day (YAD) in Cyprus.

The venture was from the very beginning an ambitious one especially considering that its organisation was almost entirely the work of 11 teenagers in what was a student-initiated and student-led project. The simple aim was that participants would work for one day in local businesses in areas of their interest.

Instead of being paid for their day’s work, the firms would donate their pay to a charity to help support the educational experiences of children in impoverished regions of the world. The students decided that funds raised would go to the Sophia Foundation for Children which helps provide educational opportunities for children in a school and orphanage in Kenya.

The day saw the participation of 93 students, 21 businesses and the collection of approximately €3,000.

The project was only available for Year 6 students of the English School as the students were advised to pilot the project on a small scale in its first year. However, given the momentum that has been ignited, the students are keen that the project be expanded next year to include other year groups of their school, as well as other schools around Cyprus.

It is worth noting that, in 2006, a similar project was organised in Belgium with the initial participation of 600 students. The same event last year, eleven years later, attracted over 15,000 students and raised more than half a million euros!

The companies that participated in the day were: A&P (Andreou & Paraskevaides) Enterprises Plc, AF Modinos & SA Vrahimis, AKTI, Apollonio Hospital, Aretaeio Hospital, Astrobank, AWG, CYPET Technologies, CyTA, Eurobank, Hellenic Bank (sponsorship), ISOTECH, KPMG, Linde-Hadjikyriakos Gas Ltd., Maria Kythreotou Colocassidou Interior Design Studio, Nice Day Developments, Point Centre, PWC, Simpraxis Architects, Vafeades & Vafeades, Yiannoukas Medical Laboratories and Zopiros Vet Clinic

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