Kettering woman's lockdown loss inspires charity to help disadvantaged children with stationery

She wants to continue her mum's legacy

Thursday, 15th July 2021, 7:00 am
Sarah with her mum, Ann.
Sarah with her mum, Ann.

A Kettering woman is on a mission to ensure disadvantaged schoolchildren have the stationery they need after setting up a charity named after her mum.

Sarah Langdon's mum Ann died from cancer at the age of 80 in April last year, having spent her life teaching countless children and inspiring them to careers in areas including engineering, art and mechanics.

Ann, who lived in Lyddington in Rutland, wanted children to read, explore creativity and be themselves no matter what their background was.

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The trust is collecting donations of stationery.

But with some underprivileged children unable to access basics such as notepads and pens because their parents can't afford them, Sarah has set up The Ann Langdon Trust to continue her mum's legacy and help children get what they need.

Sarah, 38, said: "When mum died I thought I can either be down in the dumps or I can celebrate how amazing she was.

"She was an incredible woman who changed lives.

"We'll be collecting donations of books, notepads, pens and any other stationery and creative equipment to distribute to those in need."

The charity's CTRL Alt Create logo and, inset, Sarah and Ann

Sarah, who was inspired to go into teaching and set up theatre school Too Tall Theatre, said some children who are moving into Year 7 are getting negative behaviour points and being branded as badly behaved because they don't have correct equipment - when it is not their fault.

She hopes the new charity will help children who could otherwise go down the wrong path and help parents who cannot afford stationery.

She said: "For some kids, their parents cannot afford to provide academic equipment. They then get told off for things that are not their fault and they just get off on the wrong foot at school.

"Starting at a new school is really, really hard. It's about setting them up so they are coming in on a positive vibe.

"I feel like a lot of the naughty children are put out to pasture with no duty of care and to say that as a teacher absolutely breaks my heart."

The Ann Langdon Trust will be collecting donations and giving them to as many children as they can in underprivileged areas in Kettering and north Northamptonshire.

The scheme, which will also be available through their school provisions, will take its first venture into the community in September.

Boosted by donations from Morrisons, Asda and numerous individuals, a push bike with a trailer will be used to give out 150 tote bags filled with stationery.

Sarah said she dreams of having a 'stationery library' van in the future.

She added: "Mum would have loved it. She was all about inspiring creativity in children and hopefully this scheme will help inspire more youngsters."

To make a donation of books and/or stationery to The Ann Langdon Trust, email [email protected] or visit https://www.tootalltheatre.co.uk/ann-langdon-trust.