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Back to school: Josie Naughton

If you have seen someone wearing a Choose Love t-shirt (Olivia Coleman, Julia Roberts, Pheobe Waller-Bridge, amongst others)...

3 years ago

If you have seen someone wearing a Choose Love t-shirt (Olivia Coleman, Julia Roberts, Pheobe Waller-Bridge, amongst others) you already know a little something about Josie Naughton. The founder of one of the most dynamic humanitarian charities operating in the UK today, Josie has built a pioneering brand to harness our growing desire to help displaced people all over the world. Particularly appealing to a younger generation, Choose Love runs an online store (with a pop up version in Soho) where you can purchase real items for refugees such as a sleeping bag, warm coat or sea rescue pack. Never has leaving a store empty handed felt so powerful.

Truant or treat?

Truant

A teacher you want to thank and why?

Mrs Judy Grill, my Religious Studies & Philosophy teacher who instilled in me the importance of caring about the world and social justice issues. She used to get the class to write letters for Amnesty.

Headmistress for the day?

I would introduce colonial history to the curriculum. I believe this is one of the first steps to be made before we really see systemic change and move forward into an epoch where our society will be more inclusive and just.

Top marks?

Religious Studies & Philosophy

Bottom of the class?

Sports and Maths

State or independent?

I went to various state primary schools before being lucky enough to be given a free place at an independent school called Conifers. I was also one of the last children to be given a government-assisted place at Churcher’s College, which I know is a huge privilege. I believe all children should have access to the same level of education.

School secret?

I failed my AS level maths because I didn’t revise hard enough!

School of life: how did your education prepare you (or not) for what was to come?

I wish we had learnt more about women’s health, managing finances and that you don’t always have to follow a traditional career path.

In what way do you think your education influenced your future career.

To mention Mrs Grill again, I use to look forward to her lessons so much! She taught me how to develop my critical thinking, even to be critical of what we were being taught in school. She really was one of my biggest inspirations.

Do you think you are well educated?

I feel very lucky to have had the education that I had, but I feel passionate about the need for equal opportunities for all.

If you enjoyed this, you might like to read our Back to School interview with Laetitia Ann Clark.

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