Our inspirational young Ambassadors have once again triumphed in their fundraising efforts and have made a
marvellous donation to the Appeal. River Isaac and her Mary’s Lamp girls’ group at Balfour School have organised a cake sale at the school, ably supported by teachers and parents.
Many hours of baking resulted in record sales, with huge numbers of enthusiastic school students involved. The group has now made a donation to the Mary Clarke Statue Appeal of £150.39, having also voted to make a smaller donation to homeless people as well.
We are so grateful to them and hope that others (including grown-ups) will consider organising cakes sales and coffee mornings for Mary.
We recruited River (10) 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, along with other young ambassadors, she has helped us with fundraising events, lobbied councillors on our behalf and appeared on television.
Most importantly, inspired by Mary’s example, she has set up a girls’ group called the “Mary’s Lamp Group”. This is growing and developing with the support of the school. The group arranged a power point presentation about Mary which was delivered by them in school assembly. As a result a huge number of girls and boys now know about this previously forgotten heroine. The group also helped organise a stall at the school’s summer fair, making and selling “Mary Cakes”.
River and the others have been very inspired by Mary Clarke’s courage. In particular, River tells us, she was 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 in the last days of her life, standing tall, but having laid 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.