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St Ann’s Foundation singers brave weather to support secondary school students who go to St Ann’s in Hanwell

A choir of 30 school staff, students and volunteers braved the weather to perform Christmas carols and festive songs to raise funds at Ealing Broadway shopping centre to support newly established charity to support Hanwell’s St Ann’s School, a secondary special school for students with complex profound to severe learning difficulties.

EALING.NEWS spoke to Kathleen Hau, a trustee of St Ann’s Foundation to find out more about how their first public performance went on 14 December 2023.

St Ann's Foundation at Ealing Broadway shopping centre
St Ann’s Foundation at Ealing Broadway shopping centre

What songs did you sing and which really got the crowd going?
We had a merry group of 30 staff, students, and volunteers who belted out 14 festive carols! The classics, Jingle Bells and All I Want for Christmas, really got everyone in the festive spirit and got everyone in the crowd singing. We even spotted Santa dancing to our carols.

How long did they sing for?
For a full 90 minutes. We courageously braved the rain and cold. The students at St Ann’s absolutely loved performing for the crowd, and we were thrilled to see so many beaming faces in the audience.

The Eltones, were absolutely fantastic. A big thanks to Alicia Crix, assistant headteacher at Elthorne, for her support. Alicia has truly been a joy to work with, we couldn’t have done it without her. Also thanks JR Corachea, head Of music for putting a fantastic list of carols together.

What was it like for the students to do it like this for the first time?
St Ann’s had an absolute blast. The students embraced the experience with pure joy and excitement, revelling in the opportunity to entertain the crowd. It was incredibly heartwarming to witness the faces of proud parents and parents of prospective students, further fuelling our enjoyment of showcasing how incredibly outstanding St Ann’s School and our students are.

What will you do next?
We have several exciting projects in progress. At the moment, we are actively promoting two of our books called ‘The Wheelchair Walk’ and ‘Who teaches us joy?’ Our current goal is to raise funds for purchasing new minibuses. The minibuses will be instrumental in enabling our students to actively engage in various community activities and events. These opportunities greatly contribute to student’s personal development and growth, fostering a sense of independence, and community involvement.

Are you an Ealing resident with a story to share? Or spotted something we should know about?
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