When we moved into East Sussex, I didn’t know anyone, and moving into a new area with no friends or family immediately close is daunting. With my eldest daughter starting school only a few weeks after we moved, it was the perfect time to make new friends and feel more settled in the area.
As the year went on, I made several friends with mums in the school playground, and through those mums, have made other friends. Trips to the park usually involve meeting someone else we know, and as I’m walking round the village with the buggy, I often see people I know, which makes me feel more at home.
Towards the end of term I was approached by one of the other mums about getting more involved in the school association, meaning I once again met some more people. The school association essentially fundraises for the school. In our case, money is raised to pay for things like insurance for the minibus, new benches for the school playground, and, in the past, for swimming lessons for pupils. My first experience of being involved in an event was the end of term disco, where the association ran the tuck shop, acted as bouncers and manned the gate to collect entrance money and contact details for parents.
We met up over the summer holidays to talk about the coming year, pencilling in dates and discussing initial ideas for the big event, the Christmas fair. I’m excited about the events we’re planning for this school year, and hopefully we will raise lots of money so the children can benefit. Events we’re hoping to run include movie nights for the pupils, an adults’ quiz, the big Christmas fair and regular cake sales (who doesn’t like cake on a Friday afternoon?). While we are raising money for the children, I’m also looking forward to spending more time with some new friends and learning some new skills myself.
If you have school age children, and a bit of spare time, I’d encourage you to get involved with the school association or PTA, if it’s anything like our group, all help will be gratefully received, whether it’s simply helping out at an event, doing a spot of baking for a cake sale, or volunteering to be on the committee. Every little helps towards the same goal of helping the children reach their full potential. The start of the new school is a great time to start, so hunt out your association members and get involved.