Lisnagarvey High School students raised more than £1,500 for charity with “a night of unforgettable entertainment” headlined by Nicholas McDonald of X-Factor (2013) fame and Britain’s Got Talent finalist Jordan O’Keefe.
Organised by the school’s Upper-Sixth students - “on a scale never before seen” - the recent concert was hailed as the perfect showcase for Lisnagarvey High’s many talented pupils.
“It was all the brainchild of students from Lisnagarvey’s Upper Sixth, who participate in an enrichment programme in partnership with The Enterprise Organisation,” said Head of Sixth Form, Mr Ed Fulton.
“I am so, so proud of these guys and greatly impressed by the manner in which they simply got on with organising what was a major entertainment event.
“So often we hear negative comments about teenagers and their lack of community spirit; well, our students have dispelled that myth, well and truly.” Mr Fulton said students came to him with the germ of an idea that ‘mushroomed’ into “an amazing spectacle and extravaganza of singing and dancing”.
He said: “Every aspect of organisation was undertaken by the students themselves.
“ They contacted the agents for the headline acts, held pupil audition sessions during lunch and after school, designed tickets, organised printing and facilitated sales, obtained sponsorship from multi-nationals B&Q and Sainsbury’s, as well as local business Safety Solutions NI.
“They also exploited the existing positive working relations that have developed over the years between Lisnagarvey High School and traders within the greater Lisburn area, to ensure that the Prize Draw was suitably well stocked.
“It truly was a community event co-ordinated by young people to help those in need.”
Mrs Belinda Johnston, PTA stalwart and Parent Governor, whose background is in event organising and facilities management, was on hand to provide support throughout all preparations.
“I was delighted to watch the development of leadership skills and confident decision making amongst the students,” she said. “
They really did flourish and become a competent, cohesive team.
“I have no doubt that there are entrepreneurs and future leaders of business within that group.
“They were a pleasure to work with.”
Mr Fulton, meanwhile, explained the purpose of the school’s enrichment programme was to develop entrepreneurial skills through hands-on experience in marketing, human resources and finance.
“These, together with time management and organisational skills should prepare students more thoroughly, for life in the world of work. ,” he said.
“It would definitely seem that this has been the case for the students at Lisnagarvey.”
He added: “The Sixth Form students at Lisnagarvey High School can be proud of their efforts in staging such a night of unforgettable entertainment, proud of the skills they have acquired and proud of the community from which they come.”
The charities chosen to benefit from the concert were Tiny Life and the the Cleft Lip and Palate Association.
Both charities have strong links with staff and pupils at the school.