SET Saxmundham School awarded Dora Love Prize

Creative students at SET Saxmundham School, part of the Seckford Education Trust (SET), have won a prize for the best Holocaust awareness project in the region.

The ‘Shine a Light’ Mask Trail was part of the entry to the prize. 25 businesses around Saxmundham displayed the masks that the students had designed, decorated, and painted, inspired by the past, and shines a light on people who helped others in difficult situations.

The mask trail also represented people who are helping others today; highlighting things that are relevant to us all, the students were inspired by many of the incredible people that shone out during the pandemic such as key workers in the NHS, shop workers, and incredible fundraising efforts of Sir Captain Tom Moore and the work of Marcus Rushford supporting children living in food poverty.

Eloise, Year 9 student said, “The last mask on the trail was made of hundreds of mirrored tiles. We asked people to stop and take a minute to reflect how they could be the light in the darkness, to think about what they could do to help someone else.

“Life is like a mirror, reflecting your feelings, your actions, and your thoughts. Everything you experience in life is a reflection on yourself.”

The prize goes to the project which expresses best that which was most important to Dora Love: speaking up against hatred wherever it occurs, never forgetting the ultimate consequence of seemingly small acts of discrimination and developing a sense of personal responsibility.

The Dora Love Prize is an annual competition between schools (it is a regional competition, Essex, Suffolk, Kent, Cambridgeshire) held in honour of Dora Love who was a holocaust survivor.

Mrs Thompson, Higher Level Teaching Assistant, said, “From the initial start of the project, our students have thought about and taken this beyond anyone’s expectation.

“All Seckford Education Trust schools have a strong focus on the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of our students, so we felt this competition was important to contribute to. It gave our students a real opportunity to explore what hatred, intolerance and indifference can lead to if unchallenged.

“This project was also our way of thanking the local community for supporting others during the pandemic and enabled them to develop their own sense of responsibility”.

The students wanted to highlight the local businesses in Saxmundham, shining a light on the town and attracting visitors back to the town, and created a map for primary school children to complete the trail with their trail.

SET Saxmundham School, on Seaman Avenue, Saxmundham, provides secondary education for students in Years 7 to 11.

We are holding our Year 4 & 5 Open Evening on Tuesday 14th September, for more information, please visit

Photo caption: Hannah, from University of Essex virtually awarding SET Saxmundham with their prize. Photo credit: University of Essex