South Shields pupils rally to help Nepal earthquake victims

St Peter and St Paul RC Primary School pupils with their cash-filled Smarties tubes for Nepal earthquake victims.
St Peter and St Paul RC Primary School pupils with their cash-filled Smarties tubes for Nepal earthquake victims.

Children at a South Tyneside school came up with a smart way of helping earthquake victims.

The youngsters at St Peter and St Paul RC Primary School took part in a Silver Smarties Appeal to raise money for the victims of the Nepal earthquake.

The children and their families really dug deep and it was wonderful to see how many full tubes were brought back into school.

John Gregg, teacher

John Gregg, teacher at the school, in Olive Street, South Shields, said all the children were given a tube of Smarties sweets and asked to eat the contents.

They were then challenged to refill the tubes with money.

He said the youngsters amazed staff by packing as much money as they could into the tubes and raising a total of £320.

Mr Gregg said: “The children and their families really dug deep and it was wonderful to see how many full tubes were brought back into school.”

He said the children had been very moved by the plight of those involved in the earthquake, which struck in Nepal on April 25.

More than 8,000 people have been reported killed and more than 14,000 injured in the initial quake.

A second massive earthquake struck on May 12, killing an additional 65 people.

The UN estimates that eight million people across the country are affected by the disaster - more than a quarter of the population - and that more than 700,000 houses destroyed or damaged.

Rescue charities are facing a race against time to house people, clean water supplies are running low and food is scarce.

UN disaster charity Unicef says it is racing against time because the monsoon season only a few weeks away,.

It says it has, so far, reached over 225,000 people with water and disinfection products and have provided over 24,800 people with access to adequate sanitation and hygiene facilities.

The charity has over 200 staff working in Kathmandu and the surrounding area, delivering clean water and other life-saving supplies to children and families in danger, but almost all hospitals in the affected districts have been destroyed and many of those in need are in remote areas.

It says £55 is enough to provide emergency water kits to five families.

Mr Gregg added: “When we held an assembly a lot of the children had heard about what happened and couldn’t believe how difficult it was for the people there.

“It was a really good appeal.

“The children did very well.”