Harrogate pupils set to raise £20k for African children

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With an impressive target of £20,000, pupils at Ashville College are walking the walk in support of disadvantaged children in Africa.

More than 700 students from the junior and senior schools are all set to take part in the school’s annual sponsored walk today (Thursday, September 25).

Aged from seven to 18, the pupils will be raising money for the Open Arms Infant Homes charity which is based in Malawi.

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Ashville College teacher Tom Hanna, who is in charge of this year’s walk, said: “The pupils always enjoy the sponsored walk, it’s one of the major highlights of the Autumn term.

“Over the last three decades it has garnered tremendous support. And, since the first walk was held 35 years ago, around half-a-million pounds has been raised for many local and international charities.

“This year the recipient of the sponsorship money will be the Open Arms Infant Homes charity which Ashville has very close links with, having been launched by former teacher, Neville Beavis and his wife Rosemary.”

Last year’s event raised more than £18,000 for its chosen charity, all from sponsorship from family and friends who support the 20km walk.

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In 2012 the walk had to be cancelled due to poor weather conditions but school representatives say they are confident this year’s event will go ahead without any such hitch, setting a fundraising target of £20,000.

The walk has previously supported a variety of charities including St James’ Teenage Cancer Unit, Disability Action Yorkshire, Harrogate And District Kidney Patient Support Group and the Harrogate branches of Young Carers and the National Autism Society.