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Students head to Mexico to build home for need family

Students will be building friendships when they travel to Mexico to help create homes for people in poverty.

Six students and two teachers from The King’s Academy, Coulby Newham, are giving up their Easter holiday to spend five days outside constructing a house for a family in Tijuana.

The team are joining forces with UK charity Urban Saints and the American organisation Amor which, through links with churches in Mexico, identify those most in need of a new home.

Teacher John Belmont explained:

Typically, they might be a family of three generations living in one room in a temporary shack of just a couple of square metres.

“By building them a bigger home on their plot we help them stay together as a family in more comfort.”

Even the timber-framed, rendered new houses are only 22ft x 11ft and have no plumbing or electricity supply.

The people are so grateful because it’s so much better than they’ve had before. On the last day when we hand over the keys there are tears of joy. We take food and have a party, play with their children and there are lots of smiles,” added Mr Belmont.

MexicoThe students – Alex Dean, Abbie Grosvenor, Ben Rowden, Leah Gordon, Luke Pratt and Francis Walton – have been practising their building techniques in The King’s’ engineering department before they travel.

The academy first took part in the project last year. Student development officer Amie Eagling, who accompanied the students then, said:

It was so mind-blowing that I was very keen to go back. It really opens your eyes to how little some people have yet can still be so happy. It is an amazing experience for our students.

“We are there to work and there won’t be time for sightseeing. Last year we had one chance to visit an exclusive shopping mall but, after being in Mexico, spending money on material things just didn’t feel right.”

Each student has had to contribute £800 and do additional fundraising for the trip, which sees them fly into Los Angeles then travel by bus to San Diego and then across the Mexican border.

Student Abbie Grosvenor, 17, of Marton, said:

After the group that went last year told us about their experiences I thought it sounded like a really good opportunity. They learned a lot from it. I think it’s going to be really hard but also rewarding.”

Other students from The King’s Academy are spending Easter in New York, Washington DC and Texas on sporting and cultural visits.

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King’s students are ‘on the ball’ for the Boro!

On Tuesday 3rd March, fourteen Year 7 volunteers headed off to the Riverside Stadium to act as ball girls and boys for the Middlesbrough match against Millwall.

Img_5400The King’s have a great partnership with the Football club, who offer a number of educational and community packages aimed at improving opportunities for young people to maximise their potential to achieve.

Before the game started our sporty students; Harley Harbisher, Reece Costello, Callum Smith, Danica Wheater, Ben Rhucroft, Noah Robson, Dominic Powell, Matthew Frazer, Max Taylor, Louie Hall, Cole Parker, Robbie Ward and Rebecca Wadrop, walked through the players tunnel and then sat in the dug-out for the entire match. The group even had a chance to meet some of the players before the warm up.

Boro Boys 3Danica Wheater told us:

It was great. I loved getting to see the Middlesbrough players up close. I also managed to retrieve the ball more than anyone else. I beat the boys, and that makes me very happy!”

Director of Sport, Mr Stewart added:

The students had a fantastic night, made even better by a convincing Boro win!”