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St Louis Academy pupils excel in CAFOD water appeal

Despite the challenges of the pandemic, St Louis Academy in Newmarket managed to raise £1259.64 for CAFOD’s Lent appeal. Jane Crone from CAFOD in East Anglia reports.

Working through the local Catholic Church and partner agencies, CAFOD’s local experts can reach needy people in some of the remotest parts of the world.

Working within Covid guidelines, I visited the school to talk to the Head, Mrs Sue Blakeley, and the year 5 and 6 Mini Vinnies group about how the whole school community got involved in fundraising for CAFOD’s Lent Appeal, which focussed on water poverty.

The team enthusiastically explained how different year groups were able to have a say in how they supported the appeal by organising their fundraising in ways that they could all enjoy and take part in. For example, lower key stage 2 decided to have a pyjama day while key stage 1 organised a games morning. 

Whole school fundraising activities included second-hand goods sales of toys and books, a cake sale, and a non-uniform day. School staff got involved in fundraising too; kitchen staff marked Fairtrade Fortnight by making and selling biscuits made from Fairtrade ingredients and Mrs Blakeley supported the fundraising through making and selling midweek milkshakes.

As well as responding to the needs of their sisters and brothers overseas the group told me about what they do to support the local community in Newmarket. The school has a monthly collection for Open Door foodbank , run by Churches Together in Newmarket. Before Covid they visited elderly people in care homes; as that’s not possible now they have been writing to local parishioners and school neighbours, sending them homemade Easter cards. They have also chosen to support child mental health projects through Young Minds and the anti-racism charity Show Racism the Red Card .

Mrs Blakeley said: “At St Louis, we all recognise our responsibility in helping others both locally and internationally. I am so proud of the way that all the children took responsibility for acting positively and contributing towards fundraising throughout Lent.”

Catholic social teaching asks us to work for the Common Good, putting the needs of the most vulnerable members of society first. St Louis Academy school community are putting this into practice giving everyone a chance to suggest ideas and take part.

Pictured above are pupils from St Louis Academy