Eight Year 9 girls, accompanied by three members of staff, cycled from coast to coast raising £275 for The Theo Trust, a charity that supports children living in orphanages in St Petersburg. Two boys and two girls from orphanages which benefit from the charity’s work joined the expedition as the group rode the 210 miles from St Bee’s to Flamborough Head over five days. Queen Margaret’s was pleased to welcome the two Russian girls to spend a week at the school ahead of their journey, experiencing a taste of life as QM boarders.
This remarkable trip is just one example of the varied opportunities for cultural exchange available to boarders at schools in the York Boarding Schools Group. One of the beauties of boarding is the unique opportunity to welcome those from different geographical, cultural, religious and economic backgrounds into the school. This, alongside various opportunities to travel overseas, affords pupils insight into the lifestyles, perspectives and experiences of others, encouraging them to view difference as something to be valued, to be conscientious, inquisitive and respectful.
Unlike the Olympic team, TeamQM were not racing for their country but for and with children of another. Yet, as in the games, it was in that same spirit of mutual respect and cooperation that the task was accomplished, as British and Russian pupils worked together, learnt from one another and shared what will undoubtedly prove to be an unforgettable experience.