Banburyshire school welcomes Olympic champion to celebrate sporty fundraising in aid of children in African countries

Pupils at Deddington's primary school welcomed an Olympian at their end of year assembly - rowing gold champion Tim Foster MBE.

Monday, 26th July 2021, 10:25 am
Updated Monday, 26th July 2021, 10:26 am
Olympic rowing gold medallist Tim Foster MBE pupils Daisy, Samuel and Evie at Deddington CE Primary School end of year outdoor celebration assembly

The Olympic champion's visit was the school's prize for being the most successful fundraiser in a schools' sporting relay to raise money for disadvantaged children in African countries.

The youngsters spent six weeks walking, running, swimming and cycling to raise money for the Oxfordshire charity, Rafiki Thabo Foundation.

Deddington CD Primary School's head of PE, Libby Knox said: "This charity aims to enable children and young people from disadvantaged backgrounds in Kenya, Uganda, and Lesotho to reach their full potential by removing the barriers to them attending secondary school and higher education.

"The challenge was a great way to nurture health and well-being after a difficult year with the impact of the pandemic.

"Staff, children and their families from local schools walked, ran, swam or cycled to collect miles to exceed the equivalent of the Cairo to Cape Town route which was a staggering 13,222 km. Deddington Primary School smashed the original £1000 target and trekked a fantastic 4,218 km."

Janne Pillbeam, corporate partnership development and events manager at the Foundation said: “We are so immensely grateful for the amazing fundraising, a staggering amount of £1,755. The children and staff at Deddington School have raised enough to provide the entire five-year secondary education for a child in Uganda and pay for three children to receive nutritious school meals every day for a whole year.”

As the team which raised the most of all the relay teams, Deddington Primary School was delighted to win an inspiring talk with Tim Foster MBE. This was originally planned to be virtual but as restrictions were lifted he was able visit the school in person on July 21 for an outdoor assembly.

In recognition of their amazing achievement, all children who took part received a special Rafiki Relay for Education certificate and those who raised £10 or more received a special wooden eco medal during the special assembly. Mr Foster also presented the school's end of year sports awards to the school's Year 6 prize winners, the most improved sports person, sports personality of the year and sports person of the year.