Skip past Navigation

Nathan's story

Nathan Thomas, HR Business Partner at the DHL Supply Chain Engineering & Manufacturing Functions based in Swift Valley Park, Rugby, applied for a Transform It! grant to create an outside beach school and artificial play area.

The partnership organisation for the project is Brooke School, a school which caters for 166 children, all of whom have special educational needs.

Nathan is a School Governor and contributes a number of volunteering hours for the site each year. Three pupils from the school also have a relationship with two DHL sites in Rugby, attending work experience and receiving mentoring.

Rugby is more than a hundred miles from the nearest coastal area and the majority of children at Brooke School have never been to a beach. Developing physical skills for disabled children is very important as it helps them to explore more of the world around them.

Current facilities at the school are also limited due to the hard surface of the playground area.

The new facilities would also create new opportunities for other schools to experience the beach and use the new playground area.

Nathan estimates that 20-30 volunteers will be involved in the construction phase of the project which will include tasks such as assisting with excavation, laying sand, gravel astro-turf and wooden pathways. 10 DHL volunteers will also be involved in the long term maintenance of the project.

On the 30 June, representatives from DHL and Groundwork visited Brooke school to learn about the proposed project and visit the existing facilities including play equipment, forest school and a mini farm and allotment featuring pigs, goats, sheep, rabbits and turkeys!

Speaking about the visit, Nathan said:

"I was so happy to welcome Groundwork UK and the DHL Foundation to Brooke School to meet the fantastically inspiring Head teacher, Chris Pollitt, the wonderful children, view the prospective site for the Beach School project, and experience the magical atmosphere at the school. 

"We cannot wait to welcome Groundwork back to the school when the Beach School is complete and the children are enjoying another piece of magic!"

Click here to find out more about the DHL UK Foundation Transform It! programme.