June 23, 2023

Denby Dale Rotary’s Theatrical "Kids In"

Shared by John Purvis, President Elect: For many years the Rotary Club of Denby Dale & District with the help of its Inner Wheel Club have, for KIDS OUT, taken a group of children from Castle Hill School in Huddersfield (a school for children with special needs) out for the day.

Since I got involved some years ago, Kids Out meant taking the children to Lightwater Valley in North Yorkshire but eventually it was decided this was unsuitable due to the distance, which reduced the time that the children could actually spend there.

So some years ago we agreed with the School that we would take the whole of their sixth form to Cannon Hall Farm for the day. Some will remember this from Channel 5’s TV programmes Spring and Winter on the farm.

However as mainstream schools started to take children with special needs, Castle Hill school became the home for children between the ages of 3 and 19 with more acute needs.  This meant that fewer of these children were able to join us.   It was agreed with the school that it would benefit more students if we could entertain them inside the school so “KIDS IN” was born.

The Rotary Club hired a local specialist theatre group called “Shabang,” already known to the school, to come and entertain the students putting on 2 theatre performances in the school hall in the morning and a more personal one to one performance to the sixth form in their Common Room afterwards.  They also entertained the students as they arrived first thing in the morning and later in the day they joined in a whole school sign and singing session.

Shabang artists

Music, singing, sparkling stars, pans and spoons work wonders creating a special type of music and mayhem but absolute fun and the students loved it.

Eight of us attended and we were each allocated to a classroom where we helped all day.  At times it was tough, at times emotional and tiring, but the feeling that you have helped is tremendous.  I think that it is one of the most rewarding things that we do.

Thank you to KIDS OUT CHARITY for helping us to fund this very special day that all of us who attended will never forget.   We hope that we can do it again next year.

John Purvis - would you have me as your 2023-24 President!!

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