Press Release on behalf of Rhondda Cynon Taf Media Officer:
Rhondda Cynon Taf student Alfie Ford is giving something back to his community during lockdown, by providing care packages to key workers in his locality. He has also been awarded £1,000 for his chosen charity, the Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospital due to his generosity.
From NHS staff to Council Streetcare staff, postal workers, police officers, fire officers and members of the local Diocese, Alfie – described as a “Lockdown Hero” – has been safely delivering his special parcels, adhering to all Welsh Government COVID-19 regulations at all times.
Alfie, a Year 8 student at Mountain Ash Comprehensive School, has been working on his First Give project ‘Helping From Home’ with assistance from his Religious Studies teacher David Church. It forms part of a nationwide competition and Alfie has been announced as the March winner of My First Give.
Councillor Joy Rosser, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council Cabinet Member for Education and Social Inclusion, said: “Congratulations to Alfie on his wonderful initiative. Working with his teacher, he is doing an amazing job in his community at this very difficult time for everyone.
“Alfie’s generosity and the support of local businesses is certainly spreading some cheer to our key workers at this vital time, and all of Alfie’s efforts have also benefitted the Noah’s Ark Children’s Charity.
“This admirable young man is a true inspiration to others as he personally thanks our key workers for all that they continue to do to care for us all and keep us residents as safe as possible.”
Alfie has the support of stores such as Tesco, Farm Foods, Asda, Waitrose, Co-Operative and Sainsbury’s as well as family and friends. He makes up two different types of ‘Happiness Packs’ – one which includes pamper items such as bath bombs and facemasks etc and one which includes tea, coffee, hot chocolate and biscuits etc.
Each item is individually selected by Alfie in the hope of helping the recipients relax at the end of a long shift in work. All parcels are individually wrapped and delivered with a personal note of appreciation to the recipient.
Alfie, who is now an Ambassador for the Noah’s Ark Children’s Charity, is delighted to be awarded £1,000 for his chosen charity. He said: “I am so happy to have won this money for them.
“We started off with the idea of just making up a few parcels for a handful of key workers, but I have had some amazing support from the local supermarkets and would like to thank them for all their donations.
“The idea just grew and grew beyond my wildest dreams and I would like to thank my school and teacher for giving me this opportunity. It is something I will never forget.”
David Church, Mountain Ash Comprehensive School Religious Studies teacher, said: “I am so proud of what Alfie has achieved. It has been a huge pleasure and privilege to work with him on his First Give ‘Helping From Home’ project. His enthusiasm, determination, thoughtfulness and empathy has been a joy to witness.
“Alfie is a real credit to his family, to Mountain Ash Comprehensive School, to the local community and is a wonderful young man. He certainly has a very bright future ahead of him. He has inspired me and really is my lockdown hero.”
Alfie’s proud mother Alison, said: “He is such a remarkable person, so independent and determined. I am so proud of him and all that he does. Alfie has fantastic support from his teachers at school and his ‘Happiness Packs’ are being so well received by the key workers.
“Alfie was keen to thank all of these people for what they have done throughout this pandemic, but now is our time to thank Alfie for all that he has done too.”
First Give supports secondary school students to engage in social action within their communities. The project works in partnership with secondary schools to inspire and equip young people to take positive action for their communities.
As part of the project, students learn about social issues in their communities and choose ones which are important to them. They also research charities working in their community and select one to represent.
For more information on the First Give project, visit www.firstgive.co.uk