ROMSEY school students have raised more than £2,000 for a South African charity, providing 125 school packs for children in the country.

In July 2017, Mountbatten School took a group of 41 students on a 12-day tour to South Africa. Before leaving the UK, the students raised £2,000 to support the Pebbles Project.

The charity, which provides healthcare and education to children whose parents work in the wine farms around Stellenbosch, has thanked the students for its efforts last summer.

The group visited the charity and donated 125 packed school bags to the Pebbles learners, enabling them to be prepared for their first days.

The bags contained school uniform, shoes and stationary, and the school group also donated rugby balls and training equipment.

Rachel Ward, of the Pebbles Project, said: "The funds were enough to sponsor 125 school packs for the Pebbles learners. The school packs consisted of a full personalised school uniform, school shoes, stationary and a backpack. This is often a major financial burden for some parents and the learners often cannot attend school without having the correct uniform.

"Sponsoring these school packs ensures that 125 learners could start their 2018 school year on the right path to success."

Mountbatten pupil, Dylan Lakeman-Brown, said of the visit: "We all thought that the project seemed like a huge relief for these children and we really enjoyed our time playing football with them, drawing and taking part in face painting.

"The best part was using the children's toys to tap out a beat, everyone took part and it was a lot of fun."

The students visited Stellenbosch University during their trip and played a number of rugby matches as part of the tour.

Rugby coach Tom Robinson said: "Everyone pulled together to give these students such an amazing experience and they did incredibly well raising money for the Pebbles Project, ensuring the young learners were fully kitted out for their new school year."