Students planting trees in the Christchurch redzone.

Our Partnerships and Social Responsibility

Ngā Rangapū Mahitahi me Ngā Haepapa Pāpori

We are committed to fostering meaningful local and global partnerships to facilitate unique learning experiences, foster civic engagement and instill social responsibility. Our commitment extends to academic, environmental and service opportunities, exemplified by our long-term collaboration with the charity So They Can, aimed at benefiting underprivileged students, teachers, and families in African communities for years to come.

Community and Service

St Andrew’s College students are involved in a range of community and service activities every year, in support of both the College and the wider community, some of which are highlighted below. Community Service leaders run several theme days each year, raising funds to support local charities, and most Secondary School year levels are involved in community service days.


We use the UN Sustainable Development Goals to guide our decisions and actions to improve peace and prosperity for people and the planet. Our current focus is clean water and sanitation, good health and well-being, climate action and sustainable communities.

So They Can Partnership

St Andrew’s College has entered a unique long-term relationship with charity So They Can and its founder, Cassandra Treadwell, which will benefit disadvantaged students, teachers and families in Africa for years to come.

After working informally with the charity since the start of 2021, the College’s Board has signed off on a Memorandum of Understanding which will see three per cent of all funds raised at St Andrew’s being directed towards So They Can in support of St Andrew’s new partner school, Mwikantsi School in Tanzania, and possibly others in the region. “What Cassandra and her team have created has made a difference to the lives of so many. We are very proud to become part of the So They Can community,” says Rector Christine Leighton.

St Andrew’s College has already raised considerable funds for Mwikantsi School, which have gone towards building a toilet block, providing resources, and building a meeting room for teachers. Developing a sustained personal relationship between the two schools is another focus of the partnership, with regular communication and activities planned. Much of this is being led by the student Community Service Leaders at St Andrew’s, who will also be working with children in the Preparatory School to ensure every member of the College community is invested in the partnership.

So They Can, founded by Cassandra Treadwell in 2010, aims to deliver quality education to children in impoverished communities in Kenya and Tanzania. Through programmes addressing learning conditions, teacher training, child well-being, women's empowerment, and community health, the organisation seeks to break the cycle of poverty. Notable ambassadors, such as former All Black Conrad Smith and singer Kimbra, endorse the cause. Treadwell's motivation stemmed from firsthand experiences in Africa, witnessing the impacts of poverty, particularly during a visit to a displaced persons' camp in Kenya, where locals emphasized the transformative power of education for their children.

She says she is “overwhelmed” by the new partnership with St Andrew’s College, which will provide ongoing and sustainable support for So They Can. “This programme gives us the confidence to plan three years ahead for what we want to achieve. It will absolutely change lives and many children’s futures. I’m excited and so grateful.”

Tanzanian students from So They Can charity.

City Mission

St Andrew’s has a long and proud history of supporting the Christchurch City Mission, with yearly donations from chapel service offerings, theme days and food drives. At Christmas, staff and students from all year levels donate gifts for underprivileged children.

Christmas tree with presents in the Centennial Chapel.

World Vision 40-Hour Famine

Every year, students support the annual World Vision 40-Hour Challenge, raising money for the sustained well-being of children around the world, especially the most vulnerable. The College is regularly recognised as one of New Zealand's top-performing secondary schools in the 40-Hour Challenge, resulting in several of our students being invited to the prestigious World Vision Senior Scholarship Summit.

Students raising money for the World Vision 40 Hour Famine.

Eco Action Planting

The St Andrew's College Sustainability Council has been involved with the Eco Action Planting initiative for many years. The group grows native trees and plants suitable for native bird food and habitat within the Christchurch Red-Zone, by cultivating plants sourced from the nearby Travis Wetlands in satellite nurseries managed by schools and community groups. Throughout the year, planting events and mulching takes place within the Christchurch Red-Zone.

A group of students planting trees in the Christchurch redzone.