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Community Links

Canford regards links with and service in the community as an integral part of school life. The sense of giving and co-operative achievement on which boarding school life is built here is extended well beyond the school gates.

Within the programme, each week Sixth Formers take part in voluntary work every Monday afternoon.  Canford has many long standing links with voluntary projects in the local community, such as teaching in primary schools, working in care settings and providing activity breaks for children in an inner city community in Southampton.  Younger pupils who do not join the CCF are involved in conservation activities either on the school site or in conjunction with the Dorset Wildlife Trust, for example on Brownsea Island, or with the local authority.  Twice a year, on Whole Enterprise Day, pupils are able to devote a whole day to their particular voluntary project.  

Canford has community links with local schools and education centres. With projects ranging from Science tutoring, Drama workshops to the SHINE programme for gifted pupils from local state schools.

Last year 8,844 volunteer hours were given by Sixth Formers, with 100+ pupils involved in over 70 different Community Action programmes. 

View our latest projects here:

Schools Together case studies

Canford's Mission is “to build a community of open-minded people who are motived to embrace learning in all its forms, and committed to making a difference to their own lives, and to the lives of others”.


The projects encourage pupils to become aware of themselves as members of a wider community with responsibilities towards each other.   They give a sense of self-worth and help pupils leave school as well rounded individuals.


Community projects supported


Donated to the Canford Charitable Annual Bursary Fund in 2022


Hours given by pupils in the past year to UK community projects


Hours given by staff in the past year to UK community projects 

“We value our links with The Bourne Academy tremendously and there is a great mutual benefit to the staff and pupils at both our schools from our collaboration.”

Ben Vessey, Headmaster

Bourne Academy Partnership

Canford has sponsored The Bourne Academy since 2010 and the successful partnership is a beacon of success in UK education. Mutual support, pride, ambition, trust and high expectations combine to the benefit of pupils and staff at both schools. 

In December 2007, Canford was approached by the DfE to consider the possibility of sponsoring an academy.  After an assessment of several different schools, it was agreed in the Autumn of 2008 that Canford would sponsor King’s High School in Hadow Road, Bournemouth.

As a sponsor, Canford would offer time, expertise and support without financial input. Renamed The Bourne Academy, the school opened its doors to pupils in September 2010. 

A key part of the vision for the new academy was that it would be at the heart of the community of East Howe, offering local families an excellent education, new opportunities and facilities available to all.  Raising pupils’ expectations, building their self-confidence and teaching them appropriate skills that allow them to build a successful career and contribute to society were, and remain, central to The Bourne Academy’s aims.

The sponsors’ belief that good education depends crucially on the relationships between staff, pupils, parents and the other stakeholders was another core part of the vision. 

The Bourne Academy’s vision is articulated clearly through the mnemonic, ASPIRE, to develop citizens who are ambitious, self-confident, physically literate, independent learners, resilience and emotionally literate.

In January 2022 The Bourne Academy launched a scholars' programme for gifted and talented children from Year 7 upwards. Pupils are selected for the programme based on their academic potential and approach to learning, and are offered opportunities with Canford, Winchester College and the University of Southampton.  Read more about this exciting initiative on the brochure link below:

Bourne Scholars' Programme Brochure


ISC Celebrating Partnerships 2023

The partnership between Canford and The Bourne Academy featured in the 2023 ISC Celebrating Partnerships Report, launched at the House of Lords in the presence of Government Ministers, Independent School leading industry figures and Heads and Senior Leaders.  Read the feature on pages 58-59 

celebrating partnerships 2023

It is evident that the close partnership between Canford School and The Bourne Academy continues to go from strength to strength.  The DfE views the successful relationship as one of its greatest beacons of success in the country.
Mark avoth - principal, the bourne academy

India Partnership Trip


Overseas Community Partnerships

Each summer Sixth Formers have the opportunity to work in one of our overseas community partnerships, which are currently based in India, Ghana and Cambodia.  From new school buildings to basic clean water supplies, the money raised by pupil initiated fund-raising activities allows the Partnership to flourish. Pupils see first-hand the difficulties faced by individuals living in poverty and dire circumstances, whilst being able to see the benefits their support can make to an entire community.





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