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September Spotlight on Service

For our first Spotlight on Service of the 2022-23 academic year, we are pleased to feature the collaboration of the Upper School Student Council and the Upper School Service Ambassadors on supporting local and worldwide charities through monthly Rags & Tags fundraising days. 

Here, we speak with Executive Student Council President Ryan and Service Ambassador Sophie (Grade 12) to learn more about this collaboration.

 Ryan, please could you tell us about the Student Council’s proposal for monthly Rags & Tags days in the Upper School?

 It’d be my pleasure! As someone attending TASIS for a second time throughout my grade school tenure, a feature sorely lacking upon my return was the monthly Rags & Tags. A classic example of the championed win-win scenario, donations of one or two Great British Pounds would be made in exchange for wearing free dress. Instead of going to a singular charity, the donations would then be put into a fund that various student-led organizations could tap into to better support their causes.

With the cost of living on the rise, coupled with ongoing current events, I realized that this would be a perfect opportunity to stage a Rags & Tags renaissance. Thanks to the cooperation of Mrs. Feo Hughes, an opinion form was dispatched to the Upper School student body, with overwhelmingly positive responses in support of this unique TASIS tradition’s return.

How will the donated Rags & Tags funds be used?

As aforementioned, a collective fund will be established to harbor the donations provided by students. Upper School student-led organizations can then file a grant in order to acquire or match donations to better aid their partnered charities. However, in some cases, a special themed Rags & Tags directly supporting a charitable organization or medical research may be hosted; as was the case for the September Rags & Tags, with the funds going to the Jeans for Genes charity.  Already, the Student Council has received requests to host a purple-themed Rags & Tags in December to support the Freecember movement, as well as a Rags & Tags to support flood victims in Pakistan.

Sophie, how will the Service Ambassadors and the Student Council work together on Rags & Tags and charity fundraising initiatives this year? 

This year we think it will be a great idea for the Service Ambassadors and the Student Council to work together on Rags & Tags and charity fundraising initiatives. With the fundraising project ideas from the Service Ambassadors and the logistical and resource side from Student Council, these groups make the perfect team. For example, the Service Ambassadors are working on the Red Box Gallery, which is a creative outlet in one of the red phone booths on campus from which students can borrow art supplies and let their imaginations run wild. This would be a great opportunity for the Student Council to help advertise and gain momentum for the unveiling. This, and many other projects that these two groups can collaborate on, is what will make Rags & Tags and different charity events so successful.

It is important to highlight that the majority of the clubs at TASIS are service-based. From Allies for Animals to Education for the Future, there are countless clubs that work with organizations that would greatly benefit from the Rags & Tags days. As explained above, club leaders can apply for a grant to match the proceeds from any of their own fundraisers. The money from the Rags & Tags fund will be matched with the money the club leaders have raised and, therefore, more money will be able to be donated. This is truly a great cause that would not be possible without the money from the Rags & Tags days.