It has been a busy term for FCYM, regrouping and meeting in person following a period of enforced inactivity.
As soon as we received the go ahead, Dagmar and her team reopened the Notre Dame canteen and started building a larger team of volunteers to serve, bake cakes and make sandwiches, bagels etc. If you think you can help occasionally, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The more volunteers we have, the lighter the load for all, and it is a safe, fun and sociable activity which helps maintain ND as the pastoral hub of CYM. Thank you to all those already getting involved.
Starting initially with just coffee and cakes we are now safely and successfully back to our full canteen offering. In addition to food, drinks, fruit and sweets, the cafe stocks a selection of strings and reeds and music theory books.
We are currently only able to accept payment in cash but hope to be able to take card payments soon. There is also Wi-Fi available now at Notre Dame.
On 20 November we held our AGM accompanied by performances from students and the Junior Choir. We were able to update parents and carers (and remember, all parents and carers of CYM students are automatically Friends of CYM) on our past and future plans and to elect a new Chair.
Thank you to Tomaso Spingardi for taking on the role, and to all those who attended the AGM and offered to volunteer. Tomaso has a longstanding experience in covering leading roles in non-profit organisations, particularly in the education sector. Of his six children, the 9 year old girl has just started at CYM. Having also a 6 year old and a 5 month old, Tomaso hopes to be associated with CYM for a long time!
FCYM will be holding a short committee meeting at ND canteen on 15 January to discuss fundraising plans and will be contacting people who have shown interest in volunteering. We will also try to organise a gathering next year to thank Christine Bissatt for her work as chair but also celebrate her incredible contribution to FCYM over many years as, amongst many things, charity secretary, canteen organiser and choir assistant. As always, please contact us on email@example.com to find out more.
CYM Open Days
Judith Robinson is organising the CYM Open Days this year. In addition to the usual two on 22 and 29 January, we will be holding a third on 26 February. The open days work best when we have lots of volunteers on hand to show families around CYM. Judith knows from personal experience that a friendly, enthusiastic guide can be the key thing that helps a family decide CYM is for them!
The commitment is for just over two hours from 9.15am on the day and everyone is welcome to help. Please contact the Friends and let them know which days you can do: firstname.lastname@example.org
On the last day of term, we held our traditional Christmas cake sale at ND and Morley, raising funds to purchase a new set of cymbals for the percussion department. In 2018 we raised funds for a new drum kit, so in 2022 the new kit will be complete. The Morley annual Christmas cake sale this year raised an amazing £306.20.
What else do we use the fundraising proceeds for?
FCYM help fund the purchase of new instruments, often assisting departments in their fundraising. In recent years we have been approached by CYM departments for donations towards the purchase of pianos, double bass, guitars and amps, a portable marimba, quarter size cello, mini bassoon, and a harp amongst other instruments.
You can read about the fundraising for the drum kit on pages 20-21: https://issuu.com/bmgc/docs/upbeat_issue_82
FCYM also, when requested by departments, pay for essential repairs to CYM instruments and equipment to ensure they can continue to be used by students.
In November 2019 we organised an event to support Young at Heart campaign fundraising towards bursaries. Since that event, in the absence of on-site activities, we decided to donate funds to enable more young Londoners to benefit from the CYM tuition program.
The FCYM financial statements and AGM minutes are now available at
Rescue and Liberate your musical instruments
If you have an unused instrument you would like to donate, please bring it in to Notre Dame. We can sometimes arrange collection of larger instruments. In the past we have received clarinets, trombones, guitars, viola, recorders; smaller instruments (1/4, 1/2, or 3/4 size) are useful for the early years’ students.
Donated instruments will be assessed by CYM departments and then either serviced and hired out or sometimes sold in FCYM sales.
Laurence Markantonis has built relationships with companies (Artonus, Hiscox Cases, Bam, Howard Wiseman, Marshall, Maestro Archetier, Marco Raposo Bows, Glasser Bows, RAT Stands, Thomas Martin, Pro Music, Tom & Will, Pirastro Strings, Larsen Strings and Soundpost, Ernie Ball, Marca Reeds, Crook & Staple, Charles Double Reeds and Britannia Reeds) who have very generously donated instruments and accessories to further CYM students’ musical experience. Hachette, Octopus Publishing, Penguin Random House, Omnibus Press, Sandstone Press, Ebury have also donated books, Sony a camera and Electrolux a fridge to support the work of FCYM. Laurence has also established links with Gail’s who generously support our canteen every week and some of our other events.
You can read more about some of the donations on pages 32-33: https://issuu.com/bmgc/docs/upbeat_2078_20_28issuu_29
We also receive donations from music shops and individuals for the music sales (CDs, sheet music etc).
If you would like to join our team of photography volunteers covering Saturdays at CYM and external events, please contact us. You will need a DBS check. FCYM has two cameras for this purpose.
DBS checks and chaperone licences
It would really be helpful if more CYM parents, in particular parents of younger choir members, could become licensed chaperones. This would make it easier for CYM to organise public performances for the younger children.
The CYM office can organise DBS checks, but individuals have to apply to their local authority for a chaperone licence. CYM cannot arrange these.
Each local authority has its own process to vet applicants and issue licences, some charge an admin fee. While most offer training, others don’t. Ed Magee, who is both Chair of the NNCEE and Head of children services including chaperoning in Camden, has offered to include any FCYM volunteers who are applying for licences in his training sessions if these are not provided by their respective authorities.
Thank you for reading this. Have a relaxing Christmas break and we hope you can spare some time next year to help us support the CYM community.
Friends of CYM