Pupils raise money for quake victims

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PUPILS have run up more than £500 for earthquake and tsunami victims in Japan, where they have links with a fellow primary school.

The children at Hopton Primary amassed the money for the Red Cross Tsunami Japan Appeal after racing 10 laps around the school field.

The disaster, which has claimed thousands of lives, struck a personal chord with pupils as they send letters and videos to Matsukge Primary, in Yawatahama, on the island of Shikoku.

The link was set up three years ago after headteacher Helen Harding’s son taught at the Japanese school.

She said: “Mercifully the school is okay and everyone is fine. By the time the tsunami got to the island it had dissipated.

“So many people’s lives have been wrecked by these awful events, it was suggested by a parent and member of staff that we do the fun run.

“We asked friends and family to sponsor them for each lap. The amount raised was astonishing and shows what a passionate community we have.”

As part of the link, both schools send letters and DVDS about their differing educational and cultural lives. Mrs Harding added: “Since my son left and came back to England, one of the teachers has taken up the mantle of keeping the link together and it has flourished.”