All kitted out for sport. That’s this excited group of six and seven-year-old Teesside schoolchildren.
No fewer than 140 kids have received kit to wear during PE lessons at Middlesbrough’s Park End Primary School following a £750 donation from charitable movement Teesside Philanthropic Foundation.
The money was part of the £15,000 raised by Middlesbrough business Sound Training, with staff and friends of the firm taking part in a series of fundraising efforts including the New York City Marathon and a 1920s-style dinner at Acklam Hall.
All of the funds raised were donated to the Foundation’s Schools Hardship Fund, which works with local schools to provide essential support to some of the least privileged children and families across Teesside.
The first donation has gone to Park End Primary School to ensure every one of their Key Stage One pupils has a full indoor PE kit of T-shirt and shorts – in their four house colours of red, yellow, blue and green.
School head teacher Julia Rodwell said: “The kids are over the moon with their new PE kit, they are truly excited.
“Park End Primary is a fantastic school in a proud but challenged area. This wonderful donation from the Foundation and Sound Training will make a real difference, ensuring our PE lessons remain inclusive, because sadly some children don’t have PE kit.
“We’re aware that parents have lots of expenses so this our way of helping to make everyday school life that little bit more affordable.
“Having our own set of kit means no children will have to miss PE and the start of lessons will always run smoothly.”
The pupils wore their new PE kits for the first time when Sound Training staff Sarah Earl and Lisa Parkinson paid a special visit to Park End Primary School for an assembly, where the children asked them questions about their participation in the New York City Marathon.
Lisa said: “Sound Training staff and friends took part in a wide series of fundraising events to hit the £15,000 mark because we were determined to make a difference after hearing about the Philanthropic Foundation’s wonderful Schools Hardship Fund.
“Going along to see for ourselves the real difference our efforts made to local kids made all the effort seem more worthwhile than ever.”
Claire Preston, Sound Training’s CEO who came up with the idea of the team effort to boost Philanthropic Foundation funds, said “As a Teesside-based education business, it is particularly special to Sound Training staff that we’re able to support local schools, children and families in this way.”
The £15,000 the Sound Training team raised also helped to pay for coats, shoes and Christmas presents for pupils from some of Teesside’s poorest families.
Others who took part in the marathon were Sound Training’s Claire Preston, Emma Craig, Michelle Hicks and Marcela Willis, who were joined by Lisa Preston and Jordan Clayton of Hunters Estate Agents, Jonathan Lowes of Acklam Grange School and Marie Dutch from Oaks Park High School in Ilford, plus friends Laura Requeno, Grant Tuer and Trevor Bosomworth.