Harrow Way Community School welcomed children’s educational rights campaigner Pumeza Mandela, Education Manager for the Nelson Mandela Museum, to a ‘cake and chat’ afternoon on Tuesday 12 April 2016.
The niece of Nelson Mandela travelled from South Africa to be the key note speaker at Hampshire County Council’s Rights Respecting Education Conference, and spent the days before visiting a number of schools accompanied by Bongiwe Qotoyi, Education, Material Development and Outreach Officer for the Nelson Mandela Museum.
Michael Serridge, Harrow Way Headteacher said: “It was an incredible honour to be the only school in Andover chosen to host Pumeza’s visit. We are very proud of our status as Unicef Level 2 Rights Respecting School and the influence this has in developing our students into responsible and conscientious citizens for the future.”
Along with six other schools across the county Harrow Way hosted the outreach education workshop. The school’s Year 10 Unicef Peer Educators were joined by students from Portway Junior and Andover C of E school to learn about Pumeza’s work and discuss children’s rights all over the world. They explored what is means to be a refugee with Vicky Windross, Deputy Headteacher from Portway commenting: “Our children thoroughly enjoyed the event and all the discussions about refugees and difficult situations for people in other countries really stretched them to have some excellent discussions.”
With time for a question and answer session one student asked Pumeza how she carried forward Nelson Mandela’s legacy and whether this could be summed up in three words. She replied: “Honesty, respect and education.”
In preparation for Pumeza’s visit, the children learned about Apartheid and how this impacted on the lives of people in South Africa, and around the globe. They also learned about the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: an international human rights treaty – the rights of which describe what a child needs in order to survive, grow and live up to their potential in the world.
The visits across Hampshire offered Pumeza Mandela the opportunity to speak to as many young people as possible – sharing with them the work and legacy of her family.
Pumeza Mandela’s visit to the county will culminate with the Rights Respecting Education conference (15 April). The conference, held at the University of Winchester, aims to help schools to enhance their work to teach children to become global citizens, become aware of their rights, and be respectful of the rights of others. The event will be attended by Hampshire teachers and education professionals.
For more information on Harrow Way Community School, please call 01264 364533 or visit www.harroway.hants.sch.uk. Visits to the school by appointment are always welcome.