The Miss P Foundation is turning 10.
The Oxford charity that supports children into the Arts is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a production of the Lion King at the New Theatre on Sunday.
In 2009, The Miss P Foundation was founded by Beverley Harry in her Headington kitchen when her daughter Portia – Miss P – won a place at the prestigious Urdang Academy to study musical theatre. But as an art school it was not included in UCAS and so all costs were payable.
Beverley found the fees, living and travel expenses difficult as a single parent. Portia (pictured below ) went on to receive a scholarship, but the experience planted the seeds of the charity.
“We managed, but it was hard, and it made me realise the challenges people had to put their children through Arts school,” said Miss Harry.
“So, we set up the Miss P Foundation to do what we could to help others. In a blink of an eye, ten years has gone and here we are celebrating with friends, family and recipients of Miss P Funding.
“It is wonderful to see students grow in confidence and progress in their chosen fields.
“Many families cannot afford the fees and costs involved in sending their children to Arts school. What we do supports people and helps ensure they get the opportunities they deserve.”
The charity raises funds by running summer schools and work-shops and putting on performances locally with students and charging for tickets. It also accepts donations. Aspiring performers can apply for assistance.
Portia graduated in 2012 and has appeared in various UK Westend shows including MOTOWN the musical and Beautiful -the Carole King story, and is currently on a UK tour with Kinky Boots.
The charity is run by a small team of volunteers.
“My family and friends have been really supportive and by working together we’ve been able to help more than 20 students.
“I’m so grateful and thankful to everyone who has supported the charity and helped us help others. Without the support none of this would be possible.”
Beverley, is now looking forward to the next ten years.
She added: “This is about out-reach, we want to grow and help more people and inspire them to pursue a career in the Arts. We are now looking forward to the next 10 years.”
You can buy tickets for Sunday’s performance via the New Theatre website: https://www.atgtickets.com/shows/the-miss-p-foundation-presents-the-10-year-anniversary-show/new-theatre-oxford/