Mary’s Lamp Group Fundraising at Balfour School’s 2023 Summer Fair

The inspirational Mary’s Lamp group at Balfour School has once again excelled in their fundraising efforts,  raising £175 for the Appeal at the school’s Summer Fair. 

Led by River Isaac, our first Child Ambassador, they sold cakes, badges and pamphlets, 

Ambassadors River Isaac (left) and Isaac Abatan (second right) at the Stall

ran a netball competition and handed out leaflets – and in a few short hours raised this wonderful amount. 

The group were ably assisted by Isaac Abatan (20), our very first student ambassador, who lives locally, but studies at Loughborough University. 

The ambassadors were supported by volunteers Paula Isaac, River’s mum, and Tunde Abatan, Isaac’s dad.

We are so grateful to them all and to the school students, parents and teachers who supported them. Children and adults alike must have spent hours baking. We know the very successful competition involved meticulous planning by the girls.

We hope that others will consider organising cakes sales, coffee mornings and other fundraising events for Mary.

Mary’s Lamp group at Balfour School

As regular readers will know, the Appeal recruited River as our first Child Ambassador, during the period of COVID lockdown when she asked us to help her teacher to organise an on-line sculpture class about Mary Clarke. Since then she has helped us with fundraising events and lobbied councillors on our behalf.

Inspired by Mary’s example, she set up the girls’ group called “Mary’s Lamp”, which is growing and developing with the support of the school.

All our ambassadors are inspired by Mary’s courage. River tells us she was particularly struck by Isabella McKeown’s words after Mary’s death, when she told fellow suffragettes not to mourn Mary in silence, but to “..take the torch from her and light the darkness”. These striking words have fired many people’s imaginations, including that of our sculptor.

Denise Dutton’s design for the statue shows Mary standing tall, but laying down a lamp for others to pick up. We hope that many other young people (boys as well as girls) will take up the challenge, to secure equal rights, in particular the rights of women and girls, as well as respect for democracy.

Mary Clarke Statue Appeal