Pupils from St Chad’s primary in South Norwood paid a visit to the offices of the African Child Trust last week, with gifts collected during the school’s Christmas Shoebox appeal.
The charity collection was tied in to the children studying about what it is like growing up in eight countries across Africa.
The appeal was organised for ACT-supported children of Ipaja community in Nigeria. Across St Chad’s, an estimated 20 per cent of pupils are of Nigerian heritage, and those who helped collect and present the 40 packages were treated to a special presentation about the work of ACT in Nigeria and beyond.
The presentation started with the children playing ACT’s very own board game, “Heads or Tails”. This game was created by ACT with the intention of encouraging children to put themselves in the shoes of their counterparts in Africa.
Initially, the children were understandably shocked by the realities faced by their counterparts, such as the loss of a parent, an illness entreating upon familial life or the inability to attend school because of poverty. However, once they rolled on to a square where they were able to receive ACT support, they realised how quickly charitable giving can transform lives.
They also learnt about community projects that ACT is carrying out in education, health and sanitation to improve the lives of many people in rural communities.
“It was just so wonderful to see the little ones so engaged and wanting to know why kids like themselves in other countries don’t receive Christmas presents,” said Kunle Onabolu, a director of ACT.
“I must admit, it was little hard to explain to nine- and 10-year olds.”
All those children attending received a certificate of recognition, and left engaged and interested in studying more about life in other parts of the world.
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