The fairandfunky Fairtrade Conference for Schools; ‘Stand Up For Farmers’

fairandfunky eventBookings for the fairandfunky Fairtrade Conference for Schools; ‘Stand Up For Farmers!’ are now open.

Taking place on Friday 13 May from 9.15am to 2.30pm at Halifax Minster, ‘Stand Up For Farmers’ brings together Primary Schools from across Calderdale to celebrate World Fairtrade Day.

This is the first conference in Calderdale to combine Fairtrade and the arts, offering professional development for teachers and innovative learning for students including interactive workshops involving drama, musical composition, real life stories and more.

Places are limited, please book now to avoid disappointment at:

Cost is £110 per school – this includes 8 pupils and 2 teachers or make the most of the Early Bird Booking Offer for £100 per school when booked before the end of Spring term.

Free potato growing kits for schools

The Grow Your Own Potatoes scheme is a hands-on classroom experience and with almost 2 million primary school children benefiting from this classroom experience that is linked to the UK curricular, children learn how potatoes grow and how they fit in to a healthy balanced diet.

All you have to do is register your school to receive a FREE potato growing kit, use the supporting lesson plans and worksheets and for a chance to win fabulous prizes for your school, enter the competition once you have harvested.

Click here if your school would like to register for your free potato growing kits or visit for further information.

Boost the local economy and go ‘Crackers’ this Christmas

xmas crackerThis Christmas; local businesses have been given a helping hand with a seasonal scheme to boost trade funded through Calderdale Council’s Economic Task Fund for the Ovenden, Illingworth and Mixenden Ward’s.

You may remember the 2014 Christmas hamper scheme which saw people receive a FREE raffle ticket for every £5 spent in a number of participating stores in Ovenden before the winners were announced and each received a Christmas hamper as a prize.

This year we are doing things a little bit different to provide a very merry boost for Community Groups, Schools and Voluntary Organisations in the Ovenden, Illingworth and Mixenden Ward’s.

If you are planning a Christmas fare, looking for raffle prizes or fundraising over the festive period then you may be interested in a FREE raffle prize in the form of a Christmas cracker with a £20 Voucher attached which can be spent at a local participating store within the Ovenden, Illingworth and Mixenden areas.

If you would like to get involved please contact Karen Scanlon on 01422 255402 or email

Blender bikes for all – New for Calderdale 2015

blender bikeThe Calderdale Community Coaching Trust have been successful with a funding application from Award for All (Big Lottery Fund) which has enabled the purchase of 3 blender bikes and a trailer. The blender bikes are exercise bikes with a blender attached, so as you pedal, you blend what ever ingredients you add to consume via a smoothie.

The blender bikes are to be taken around Calderdale to introduce and educate the local community about healthy lifestyle.

The bikes will be available to the following:

  • Corporate & Charity Events
  • Schools
  • Galas
  • Youth Groups
  • Businesses
  • Community Sports Clubs

At this moment in time, blender bikes are FREE to hire, you just need to pay for your smoothie ingredients.

For more information about blender bikes, please contact or call 07947 827627.

Schools get the Sex Factor

Csex-education_2805017balderdale Council is helping local secondary schools to educate pupils aged 13-15 years old about relationships, staying safe and safe sex through means of theatre.

The ‘Sex Factor’ theatre production teaches pupils about how to stay safe; delaying sex until they are older; safe sex and where to go for help, through a performance which will appeal to young people.

The programme is based upon research with young people and showcases a range of different scenarios that pupils may find themselves in. After the play, pupils can talk to a range of experts to ask questions and get more advice.

Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) is already part of the curriculum across all schools and Calderdale Council is working with the ‘Theatre & Learning’ company to help them deliver these sessions.

Out of 14 secondary schools 10 have so far signed up for the new programme and remaining schools are in discussions.

Places for the performance are limited so parents are encouraged to book as soon as possible by emailing

Parents can also make use of the fantastic support on offer at or which helps parents talk about growing up, relationships and sex.

Preventing Fires in Your Neighbourhood

Over the last year Dean Field Community Primary School Junior Wardens have been working on an arson and fire project with West Yorkshire Fire Service and Ovenden Initiative.

The work has involved walking around local neighbourhoods and identifying rubbish that could cause a fire risk.

Afterwards bulky waste or flytipping reports are made to the Council and the Fire Service so that rubbish can be cleared up and homes are made safer.

Dave Chadwick – White Watch Commander at Illingworth Fire Station was so impressed with the report the Junior Wardens sent through to him, he invited the children to visit the fire station and meet the White Watch team and Gemma Thacker – Arson Task Force officer for an afternoon of fire safety and fun and games.

Oi Miss, You’re Nicked!

st michael and all angelsMrs Weston got a bit of a surprise this week, when PC Scott Gardner and PCSO Brian Russell visited her classroom at St. Michael and All Angels School for a Junior Warden session and she found herself in handcuffs!

Arranged by Heather from the Ovenden and Mixenden Initiative, the officers made a special trip to the school in the Police van to talk about their jobs with West Yorkshire Police.

Despite getting locked in the cage van and watching their teacher being arrested, at the end of the session nearly every hand went up when the children were asked how many wanted to join the police force now!

We’ve passed the info on to the new Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson for future reference.