On Wednesday 17th July Grant Thornton’s interns gathered from all across the country (some coming from as far as Belfast!) at St Michael’s Primary School in Birmingham, where we volunteered for a day of building a sensory garden and renovating the playground. Between us we’d managed to raise well over £1,500 through fundraising events as varied as “guess the weight of the royal baby” and “man vs curry”! I mentioned previously that I was organising a raffle, which went excellently! The raffle team managed to get some amazing prizes donated by local companies, such as tickets to the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, Hotel Chocolat gifts, a meal at Nando’s, yoga gift voucher from Attentome, and four gym passes, two from Goodvibes and two from Ozone Health and fitness! Overall the London office raised a whopping £815.93! A massive congrats to everybody that contributed to that, especially the Yorkshire team who won the per capita prize for most money raised.
As you may be aware, Wednesday 17th was declared the hottest day of the year (so far!) so it was a lovely day to spend outside. I spent most of the day digging, painting and then planting which was hard work in the heat but really enjoyable and rewarding. Grant Thornton had enough water, snacks and sun cream to hand that the weather didn’t cause too many problems.
I really enjoyed having the chance to meet interns from across the country and get an idea of Grant Thornton’s presence nationwide; some from the southern offices I recognised from our induction day back at the start of July so it was great to catch up on how our internships were going over lunch. It was really interesting to see how we worked as a team when faced with challenges that weren’t office based or work-related; getting ten people to quickly and efficiently dig out a path, three-inches deep is harder than you’d expect! I found applying skills like initiative to a new environment really stretched me, and ultimately I had a lot of fun.
The best part about the day was the fact that we knew we were helping such a worthy cause. The school hadn’t broken up for the holidays yet so we were able to meet some of the kids and hear how excited they were about the new garden area we were building. The staff at the school were really appreciative of our hard work, and deserve a massive thank you for all the work they put into designing the garden and organising the day. I think it’s fair to say that when the coach arrived to take us all back to Birmingham International Station, we were dirty, sweaty and tired but pleasantly full of that satisfaction that comes from doing something for a good cause, and spending a day in the sunshine working with your friends.