School digs deep for earthquake hit pupils

Pupils in Forest Gate have pulled out the stops to raise over �1,000 for earthquake victims in New Zealand and Japan.

The majority of the money raised by children at Forest Gate Community School in Forest Lane will go towards the refurbishment of Shirley Boys School, which was devastated by the February earthquake in Christchurch.

Assistant head teacher Amy Samuels said: “I am very impressed with the conduct and ingenuity shown by our young people at this school who have supported this worthy cause.”

Forest Gate’s head of PE, Duncan Gittes, was brought up in the Christchurch area and has helped organise the fund raising efforts along with members of the Student Council, including school head boy Cameron Benjamin-Hardy, Leticia Yeboah, Anquia Khan and Chloe Green.


Mr Gittes still has family in the Christchurch area and has been keeping up to date with the situation there through texts and emails.

The Forest Gate school children raised the money for their peers down under by making and selling cupcakes, holding special staff lunches and running sports events, such as trampoline, football and table tennis.

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On April Fools’ Day, the council ran a ‘No Uniform’ day where students paid �1 to not wear school uniform and staff were taxed �5 if they failed to wear it.

An �800 cheque was presented last Tuesday (12/04) by the pupils to Louise McDermott, a pharmacist who lives near Christchurch.

Mrs McDermott is leading efforts to raise money for Shirley Boys, where students are having to share facilities with pupils whose schools were destroyed by the 6.3 magnitude earthquake that killed more than 60 people.

Having surpassed their �750 target, the Forest Gate school children were also able to contribute to the Japan earthquake fund.