Last week three ARK academies hosted a team from the Virgin Strive Challenge with pupils taking part in their own personal challenges.
This August, a core team of 10 people will take part in the Strive Challenge - aiming to reach the summit of the Matterhorn from London, entirely under their own steam. The Challenge aims to raise £750,000 to support young people in the UK develop the life skills they need to reach their potential.
Students from ARK’s Burlington Danes Academy in White City joined together to run, cycle and row 1,300 km – the same distance that the Strive Challenge Team will travel.
The students have been integrating Strive into everything they do in the classroom – in geography, they have been learning about the different terrains the Strivers will be facing, and in English, they have been learning about heroic journeys in literature.
Later in the day the Strive team travelled to ARK Globe Academy in South London to spend an exciting afternoon in the sunshine, meeting and spending time with the pupils.
After participating in some highly competitive games of Rounders and Egg and Spoon races at the Globe sports day, the team split up into three panels, to listen to and provide advice to members of the school's Sixth Form as they pitched their innovative “strive” ideas or projects they are embarking on, in a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style event.
From dreams of being a surgeon, to creating Youtube Channels, to developing a charity tuck shop, all of the presentations captured the interest of the Strive team. One of the students, Quanisha, pitched ‘Back to the Future’, a scheme aiming to use motivated sixth formers to provide help, support and advise to the Year 11 students sitting their GCSEs.
The previous day the Strive Team had spent the afternoon at Ark Academy in Wembley with Karl Lokko, a former gang member talking about the importance of goal setting and life skills.
The students listened attentively during a special assembly while the Strive team spoke about the route they are taking, fitness, nutrition, how they got involved, and the gear they will be using when they conquer the Matterhorn. They then snapped an epic selfie before the Year 9 students returned to their classes.
They then spent time in the library in a discussion with the Year 10 prefects. The prefects talked about their City Safe campaign which aims to make the streets safer by posting stickers in the windows of shops and tube stations who have agreed to be safe zones. They are also part of North London Citizens and are aiming to improve the flow of buses and make the service more frequent.