Tonbridge Community Action (TCA) is the main way in which boys can volunteer their time and skills to work within our wider Tonbridge community on a weekly basis.
110-120 boys join TCA each year. As very visible representatives of the school we expect high standards of commitment and responsibility and the boys not only thrive on their ambassadorial role but quickly come to understand how much their TCA volunteering can help in their own development. Working closely with local schools, community leaders and charities we make sure the boys are given challenging outreach opportunities so as to maximise the boys’ skills and the value of their TCA experience.
The majority of boys opting for TCA work in Primary Schools as Homework club mentors, sports coaches, music makers, school club helpers and classroom assistants. Some choose to help in a unit for those with special educational needs and work 1:1 with children on the autistic spectrum. This is demanding but highly rewarding work. The boys come to be regarded as valuable role models by the staff at the 12 Primary Schools we visit each week.
Currently we work with two local secondary schools. At Hugh Christie we work with year 7 pupils helping them to acclimatise in their first year at secondary school as well as supporting those who have yet to learn to swim. We also visit Hayesbrook to help teach English to both those who struggle with the subject at GCSE but also those who have a talent that can be nurtured further.
YMCA Horizon Project & Prince's Trust
These two specialist projects demand a particular commitment as our boys are helping those for whom school and, in the case of the Prince’s Trust, the years immediately after school have been particularly difficult. Sensitivity, courage and resilience are the qualities the boys involved in these two projects require and then enhance.
We have strong links with a number of local care homes whose residents welcome our boys regularly to chat, and help with clubs such as arts and crafts or music and computing skills. Boys also play indoor croquet with residents in one or two care homes.