News Dame Julie Walters Present Samaritans Awards 03.12.2018

Collyer’s welcomed Dame Julie Walters to present awards to students who won the prestigious Samaritans Christmas Card Competition 2018. The winners were: Georgia Gibson, Emily Kirsten, Natasza Szczepanski and Megan Wright.

Susie McAlister Subject Leader for Art and Design at Collyer’s was delighted: “We are always very happy to work with the Samaritans and the students were thrilled to be able to give something back to the organisation that is so highly regarded by all”

The original winning designs were judged by the panel comprising Samaritans’ volunteers Caroline Thomas and Sue Jago, and artists Leslie Taylor and John Connolly. Cards are now on sale in the Horsham Museum Charity Christmas Card Shop.

Megan Wright said: “The Samaritans is such an important charity in supporting mental health. I am so pleased to help contribute this wonderful work.”

Natasza Szczepanski said: “I am very pleased that my work has been chosen to be one of this year’s Samaritans Christmas card designs. The Samaritans is such a great charity, always there to support anyone going through hard times. I am very happy to be a part of this amazing charity.”

Emily Kirsten said: “I was so pleased to hear that I am one of the winners for the Christmas card competition. I am happy to be able to support the Samaritans and all the good work that they do.”

Georgia Gibson said: “The Samaritans are such a positive organisation and make a difference to so many, that I was delighted to have been chosen, as one of the artists for the cards. I hope that these cards can help the Samaritans to continue with their valuable work.”

The Collyer’s students actually began designing the cards during the summer term, one of the hottest on record! To create a seasonal feel their teachers adorned the studios with tinsel and even played Christmas music while fans cooled the art rooms down!

Ian McAlister, Director of HE and Progression at Collyer’s, teaches art at the Ofsted Outstanding college. He said: “It certainly takes a lot of imagination to get excited about Christmas in July, but this is all part of teaching students how a professional brief works!”

Collyer’s Principal, Sally Bromley, said: “Within the Collyer’s community the Samaritans charity is really close to our hearts and we are privileged to have such a special relationship with them.

“Huge thanks to Julie for coming to visit us today to present the awards to Georgia, Emily, Natasza and Megan for their fantastic Christmas card designs. Everyone should go and buy some!”

Dame Julie Walters, who is Patron for Horsham and Crawley Samaritans, presented the winning students with their prizes, including art equipment, kindly donated by Seawhite art supplies.

Julie then took time out to look at the art work and speak to staff and students. She said: “I am so pleased to be working with Collyer’s Art department once again and I’m impressed with the quality of the entries.”

Kevin Hawkes, Head of Horsham Samaritans thanked all of the entrants for their designs and commented: “Each year we try to choose the most appealing cards and this has proved to be a very successful arrangement with cards often selling out and needing second or third runs of printing! This has been the case once again this year!

“It is so good to work with Collyer’s on this project and to have the privilege of choosing from such a wonderful and wide selection of young artists’ work. Each year we begin the difficult task of narrowing down the submissions until we have a clear overall winner, but this year we were lucky enough to have been able to choose four cards that work as a set together!”