The Ruth Hayman Trust STAR CHALLENGE

This is an article by Mary Simpson, of the Ruth Hayman Trust, about an exciting new fundraising competition.

What does the Ruth Hayman Trust do?

Ruth Hayman was a founder member of NATECLA, and in her memory the Trust, NATECLA’s charity, gives educational grants to adults who have come to settle in the UK and whose first language is not English. Here are three examples from our December awards meeting:

  • A refugee from Sudan who joined her husband as part of family reunion, in the UK for two months, awarded £300 for a basic ESOL course.
  •  An unemployed refugee from Ethiopia awarded £130 towards a qualification to enable him to gain work in the Security Industry.
  • A refugee dentist from Syria, in the UK for 3 years, awarded £400 towards the ORE Part 2 exam, required to practise dentistry in the UK. She’s already received a grant from the Trust for IELTS and ORE Part 1 and successfully passed. She’s nearly at the end of the long road to a career as a dentist.

In 2014-5 we awarded more money to more applicants (£30,076 to 154 people), and so far this academic year we have made even more awards than last year. The need for the Trust has never been greater and this means we need to raise more and more money.


Click this image to view and download a high quality poster for sharing

What is the Ruth Hayman Trust Star Challenge?

A challenge to students and teachers across the UK to run fundraising events to raise money for us. The Challenge is open to groups, which might be made up of individual classes, groups of classes or whole small organisations. The group who raises the most money between 1 January and 30 May 2016 wins £200, the runner up £100 (prize money kindly donated by the English Speaking Board). Full details are on our website,

What kind of fundraising events?

It’s up to the students to decide, which is great language for development (e.g. expressing opinions, asking for information, persuading, agreeing, disagreeing).

In the past activities have included:

  • Bring and buy sales
  • Selling home-made food and recipes
  • Staff/student football matches
  • Auctions
  • Services such as facials and massages, henna painting
  • Enterprise … to make money from a £10 outlay
  • Sales of student writings
  • Concerts

What do the students get out of it?

A teacher at City and Islington College where students have run a number of successful fundraising events commented: “The students are not only learning English, but are also using their skills in a real-life fundraising project to help students like themselves.” Students themselves were really enthusiastic. They felt they had benefitted from ESOL classes and wanted ‘to give something back’, to support other learners, often from similar backgrounds, with their studies.

All RHT Star Challenge participants will get a certificate, and representatives will be invited to a prize-giving event. The winners will get to decide how they want to spend their prize money – it could be on a group outing or a social event, for example. For more ideas see our website.

How do we get started?

Just email us to say you’d like to take part in the Challenge at events[at] We’ll be in touch to offer support – we’ll also send a short application form. We suggest you have a look at the student fundraising materials at which include a lesson plan, a reading comprehension about the Trust and vocabulary exercises to introduce different types of fundraising activities.

Please spread the word about the RHT Star Challenge to colleagues and students, and sincere thanks to all of you who already support the Trust so generously.


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