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Camila Batmanghelidjh returns to Sherborne Girls

Published Wednesday 24th of July 2013 12:01:08 PM

Kids Company founder and director Camila Batmanghelidjh, who works with some of the most vulnerable children in society, visited her alma mater Sherborne Girls in Dorset recently to open Aldhelmsted West, the brand-new, purpose-built boarding house that will now be home to 50 11 to 13-year-old students.

Speaking at the unveiling of the plaque and to parents, students and staff at the Commemoration ceremony earlier, Iranian-born Camila spoke about the legacy of her time at Sherborne Girls, which she attended from the age of 12. 'Sherborne Girls finds a young person's talents and allows them to flourish - in my case it wasn't running across the lacrosse field but in art.

'Sherborne Girls shares its opportunities. I will always cherish the girls wrapping presents for 4,000 disadvantaged children so that they would have beautiful gifts to unwrap on Christmas Day. This, I hope, will be the biggest gift the girls will be able to give in life the capacity for kindness and helping others.'

Stephen Wingfield Digby, Chairman of Governors at Sherborne Girls, said: 'The new boarding house is tailormade for younger girls, and shows the continuous investment in the School. It is a comfortable, homely, well-equipped new home, with its own dining room, which is an important part of the pastoral care offered at Sherborne Girls, and I'd like to thank housemistress Hayley Vanstone and her team who have worked hard to make a smooth transition for the girls, as well as the enthusiasm of the girls themselves for their new home.'

Built by Sturminster Newton-based firm Hammonds Building Contractors and designed by Shaftesbury-based chartered architects, Proctor Watts Cole Rutter, Aldhelmsted West has study space and communal areas for relaxation and socialising, with a dedicated garden and dining room. The new building will not only create facilities especially tailored for younger students but also give the school the opportunity to convert an existing house into another mixed-age house for 13 to 17-year-olds.
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