Being aware of our place in the world - and recognising the value of everyone else in it (no matter how far away from us geographically or culturally) - is an important value here at TCG.
Thinking of others - especially those less fortunate than ourselves and those who are striving to protect our environment for the longterm - is both a challenge and an opportunity for children and adults alike.
We always have a number of charitable projects ongoing which are relevant to us here at TCG. Currently, as it is close to the hearts of our Forest School and Outdoor Learning team, we are supporting The Woodland Trust monthly. This superb charity supports and protects existing woodland - especially ancient English woodland - as well as funding a large planting campaign to replace those trees lost every year to building, roads, logging and the ever-present 'creep' of humans across the land. Woodland is such an important natural environment for children to experience that we feel we should help those who are helping it!FARA: In May 2016, Claire Kenyon, TCG's founder and the driving force behind our ethos, travelled to Romania (see picture right) on behalf of FARA - the UK-based charity set up 25 years ago to improve the lives of young Romanian orphans.
Claire's own experience of working in a Romanian orphanage in the early 1990's was a major catalyst for her embarking on a career as a Montessori Teacher with pre-school children.
FARA approached Claire because of her experience as an early years' specialist and her expertise on creating environments which stimulate the child's own questions. They have asked Claire to visit a selection of their orphanages and to observe their practice - with a view to her helping them to create environments aimed at the holistic development of the children and delivering training to the staff.
Claire's passion is researching and developing new and innovative educational practices - much of which feeds into our approach at TCG - and she was very excited about returning to Romania to see how the care of young children has developed since she was last there.
This is what Claire said on her return: "What a revelation! These homes have managed to recreate an atmosphere which is as close to a warm, family environment that you could imagine. The staff truly live the children and, despite the difficult start they have had, they can now look forward to a bright future and life-long support.
"I have been helping the homes to foster an environment which encourages the children to become more independent, helping to create areas where they can discover what they enjoy and have an aptitude for. I hope to go back in September and see how it is working!"
For more information on the wonderful work of Fara click here
Syrian Refugees: As Europe's greatest humanitarian crisis since the Second World War unfolded last year, TCG Founders Claire & Ed Kenyon and their three children (Sophy, Archie & Ted; then aged 14, 12 & 6) decided to travel to the Croatia-Serbia border in their motorhome and deliver a large quantity of supplies to a refugee camp. They liaised with the InterEuropean Human Aid Association who had volunteers working in the camp.
Many TCG parents and staff contributed either clothing, bedding or money and every single item went to good use. It was a 'drop in the ocean' but much need by those families passing through the Opotovac Camp at that time. Claire and Ed were struck by the 'normality' of the majority of these people who had risked everything to escape the destruction of their country and seek a better life for their children.
TCG will be doing further fundraising for Syrian Refugee children in the future.
The Coffee Machine in the TCG Parent Hub, which is a self-service bean-to-cup machine, is being used to raise money for these causes at the moment. Please help yourself to a delicious coffee or tea and put a donation in the 'Charity Pig'!