Six months ago, we had a chance meeting with the team from Honister Slate Mine. Employee Tori Jones volunteered for one of our Aspiration Sessions. She shared her career journey with the children along with other business volunteers and after we discussed plans Honister had about getting out into the community and engaging with other local schools.
Honister is a small business in the centre of the Lake District, they produce the World famous Westmorland Green Slate a beautiful, functional 450 million year old material in the last working slate mine in England. They have also diversified to create a sustainable business by providing the opportunity to take adventure to the limit with Mine tours, Via Ferrata, Climb the Mine and an infamous Burma bridge called The Infinity Bridge.
Jan Wilkinson, Honister Slate Mine co-owner explains “The timing was quirky as we were looking at visiting our own local schools to initiate a relationship with them. We were wanting to show the local children what they have in their “own back yards”, from the great way to see and learn outside the classroom, geography, geology and history. But also their social history, be inspired by some of their ancestors and understand a little of how modern lives still use the legacies of those people. We interact and show the children how a very old manufacturer of a product formed from the times of dinosaurs is used today. The where and how, the new modern income streams and how getting out into open space actually can be fun too”.
Fast forward six months later, with the support of the Primary Business Partnership, Honister has worked with the schools and delivered these sessions in seven primary schools across Allerdale and Copeland.
Last month Tori was in St Michael’s Primary School, Bothel where, Miss Vicky Skelton had this to say.
“A brilliant session informing the children about the slate mine and geology which has sparked curiosity from all involved. Both staff members were brilliant with the class and accommodated to all needs, an informative session enjoyed by all, thank you”.
And the children had more to add, here’s a few of their comments:
“I think this session went really well because Tori taught me some really good stuff like the gold wasn’t real and she also let me help.
I liked the fact that we could handle actual rock and see the grain in it
I thought it was amazing and I learnt lots“
If you are a business and want to find out more about volunteering, how it can develop your team and your business then get in touch. We can help you engage with your local community, educate and inspire.
Get in touch with the Primary Business Partnership team
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