WALLASEY students raised £10,000 to put a roof on a Nigerian village school.
Hundreds of teenagers at St Mary’s Catholic College have been fundraising for three years to help its partner school in the village of Chito in Benue State, central Nigeria.
Their efforts included sixth formers Richard D’Arcy and Tom Best running the Liverpool Half Marathon earlier this year while fellow student Miranda McCabe performed Indian dancing at school fundraising events.
Maryland School, in the Catholic Diocese of Makurdi, provides secondary education for nearly 500 local youngsters, some of whom walk up to 10 miles every day to get there and back.
Up to 150 children crowd into breezeblock classrooms with just one teacher.
Fundraising by St Mary’s paid for the building of a fourth classroom two years ago and now the roof can be finished, along with other smaller buildings.
As well as providing the cash St Mary’s has sent books and art equipment to support Maryland’s curriculum, prompting head boy Samuel Atooshi to write saying: “You have made our school the best in the whole of Benue State, Nigeria”.
Nigerian priest Father Moses Igba received a cheque from St Mary’s headteacher Tony Boyle on behalf of Makurdi Diocese.
Mr Boyle said: ‘This is part of St Mary’s commitment to help all our students become confident, global citizens and it is a privilege to be able to support the education of children who otherwise would stand little chance.
“The money raised represents a magnificent effort on the part of our students, and it will go a long way in improving conditions at Maryland School.”
For the last few years Fr Moses has served the Catholic Diocese of Shrewsbury as a relief priest for a number of parishes including St Alban’s in Liscard and Sacred Heart, Moreton.
Five years ago parishioners at St Alban’s raised £5,000 to dig a bore hole for the villagers, bringing them a ready source of fresh water for the first time.