On Thursday 31 October, we will be hosting a brand new event – Big Talks – an initiative started by Nahla Summers. After visiting Windermere School during her 500-mile walk from Swanage to Gretna Green, Nahla was inspired to start Big Talks after realising the value of first-hand stories of connection and inspiration.
The event will involve five speakers, each giving 20 minutes of their time to share their life experience with the students and visitors to Windermere School. This is opportunity to gain real insight into the life experiences of the five speakers.
Our five speakers all have incredible stories to share – from overcoming adversity and challenges throughout life, to being determined to achieve your dreams and earn success.
The idea of Big Talks is to offer the opportunity for young people to be inspired by people sharing their story. We are hosting this as a completely free-to-attend event with external and internal families welcome to attend.
The event will be split into two parts, with external families welcome to attend from 7.00pm – 8.30pm:
4.20-5.40pm Whole School & Staff. Speakers: Ian Blunt, Washington Ali, Steve Hill MBE
7.00-8.30pm Boarders & Externals. Speakers: Harrison Ward, Lee Earnshaw
Name: Ian Blunt
What is success? If you ask Success Guru and Motivational Speaker Ian Blunt, it’s not defined by the result, but rather the effort. Throughout his life, Ian has had many ups and downs. During a particularly low point, he realized what the answer was – find purpose and you can’t not be successful. Following this method, he started his new life and went on to start up his own business – Life Change Guide. Ian motivates people from all walks of life to find more success and live their own lives with true purpose.
Talk Title: Becoming Alive from Surviving to Thriving
At 22, Washington has lived a multifaceted life, experiencing home, private and state education. Within these contrasting environments, he could not comprehend what “this”, being life, was about, which caused a surge of curiosity that led him to travel the globe, learn holistic practices, to invest in property and co-found a tech company Polygon Students. This allowed him to discover his purpose, which he believes is to be of service to people by empowering them through his workshops and his Talk “Become Alive from Surviving to Thriving” a how-to talk on discovering your own personal power.
Talk Title: Dream big – Aim high – Never give up
Steve Hill, MBE, is first and foremost a teacher, but a teacher with a difference. He takes on immense challenges each year, raising, to date, £100,000. He has named these challenges ‘Mr Hill’s Challenges’ as he aims to always inspire his Year 6 class each year.
So far, his challenges have amounted to a whopping 16 in total, ranging from completing several 230km marathons in deserts and jungle environments. Climbing six of the tallest mountains, including Everest, along with a 200 mile trek across the Sahara Desert to name just a few.
Steve is also an ambassador for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards. He was awarded his MBE for services to education and charity, along with multiple other awards, including Inspirational Teacher of the Year, National Teacher Award and National Happiest School Person among many others.
Steve’s motto is ‘I can and I will’, he believes anything is possible and, through his talk, he hopes to inspire the youth of today to feel exactly the same.
Name: Harrison Ward
Harrison Ward, who is better known as Foodie Fell, has made his name for his love of the outdoors and cooking. With a large social media following and ever-growing media attention, his story is one that inspires hope for us all.
Name: Lee Earnshaw
Lee Earnshaw is an Operations Manager at Amazon UK and former Command Sergeant Major of 3 (United Kingdom) Division. During a 25-year career in logistics and supply chain operations, he has gained valuable experience building and leading large teams and organisations around the world. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Leadership and Business Management.
Born in Yorkshire (God’s Country, in his words) when television was restricted to four channels, he sought an exciting career further afield. This would lead to adventures around the globe in the pursuit of inspirational leadership.
He enjoys cycling up mountain roads in the hope of fitting into a pair of jeans he bought five years ago, while spending time with his wife and three children; one of whom consumes a significant amount of his second bike fund’ as he studies for a law degree.
The first time my daughter and I visited the school she said to me “that is a happy school no question.” The scholastic achievements of the school are evident and an easy measure for a school to demonstrate. What is hard to quantify is the holistic development of a pupil at which, in my experience, Windermere School excels.
Windermere School is such a unique community to be a part of. Not only is it based in a truly beautiful and inspiring national park, but the environment created by staff and students alike makes for an incredibly supportive, proactive, exciting and international place of learning in which everyone can thrive and be the best they can be.