The John's JCR had donations to the Stephen Lawrence foundation matched by the College for a total of over £2,500lucas chebib

St John's Anti-Racism Fundraiser

The JCR at St John's has ran a virtual fundraising day for the Stephen Lawrence Foundation, inspired by the recent BLM protests sparked by the death of George Floyd. The fundraiser raised over £2500 — £1083 from Johnians, and £1500 from the College and the JCR.

Events for the JCR’s last fundraiser of the term included a round of Bake-Off, a Zumba class with the sports officer, and a Zoom quiz. 

John’s JCR told Varsity they chose the Stephen Lawrence Foundation over Black Lives Matter UK because they thought it was a smaller charity “more likely to be overlooked”, as well as being specifically involved in working “with young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to transform their life chances”. This they said included the issue of BME access to university. 

The JCR are “really happy” with the money raised, and are “grateful to the Johnian Community” for their support.

St Catharine’s New Graduation Hymn

St Catharine’s chaplain, Ally Barret, has been using her ‘quaran-time’ to write a new hymn for the college graduation this summer. In coordination with the Catz Music department, Barret has asked college members to send in a video of them singing the song (to the tune of Danny Boy) to create a multi-tracked video for the summer ceremonies.

Rev Barrett said she was inspired to write the song by the creation of other multitrack projects early in quarantine, which she found “really moving.” When it came around to planning graduations, she thought that the idea of song to a familiar tune with words that will be “meaningful to people in the current context” could be “special.” 

Although Barrett was worried they “wouldn’t get enough people taking part” considering the “tight” deadline, with the help of her son Dan and the College they now have 2.8GB worth of footage to make use of. 

The song is “just part of what the college has planned” for the final year students, but Rev Barrett hopes that the 2021 graduation will have the same “feeling of solidarity and community spirit” that the song aims to capture at the “heart of it all.” Barrett had special thanks for the Catz organ scholars, Caius and Alex, as well as Izzy in the St Catharine’s choir.

Scudamore's Re-opens

Scudamore's Punting is reopening after a recent easing of Covid-19 restrictions. In a press release from Saturday, the punting company announced that self-hire in groups of six will return on the upper Cam, followed soon by punt tours and the Route along the college backs. 

The company has taken measures to ensure social distancing on the river and in onshore operations. Scudamore's has purportedly been running for more than 100 years, yet Covid-19 has been the first time it has paused operations.

King’s Front Lawn

Cambridge residents seem to have reclaimed the front Lawn of King’s for socially distanced gatherings during last week’s spell of good weather.

Although it hasn’t been officially reopened by the college, Varsity understands that passing Porters have not interrupted the occupations.

Falcon Updates

In a follow up to last week’s light news, one of the Pembroke Peregrine Falcons has been returned to Pembroke and released. A third chick landed on the grounds, but was almost immediately released by the Porters. All the chicks currently on the site are reportedly doing very well and growing more confident, although the third one is not flying quite yet.

The Pembroke falcons have developed some fame, being a regular feature on the Pembroke twitter account, as well as having their own active account themselves. Before they were released, the chicks were being cared for at St Ives’ Raptor Foundation.


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Timeout App

The Student Run Computing Facility (SCRF) has recently launched a new video-calling app for the University called Timeout. Advertising itself as “free and simple video-conferencing”, the plan is to make this free to all members of the university. 

The SCRF is a volunteer-run society which provides free computing and hosting for societies and students, with over 1000 users and 800 societies making use of the service.

Speaking to Varsity, the developers said that the creation of Timeout was sparked by SCRF members aiming to do “something meaningful” with their newfound time during coronavirus.

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